Cataract Surgery: Good, Bad, and Ugly

If you live long enough, you too will likely have to have it done. It’s pretty much a disease of the old. Sometimes it creeps up on you, sometimes it hits fairly fast. I’m in the latter group. I was doing fine until February of this year, when suddenly I noticed my sight was getting blurry. It proceeded to get worse to the point where I finally saw my eye doctor.

Actually, I saw a new one. The shop I got my glasses from last year, I found out, gave me the wrong frames for my prescription, which caused that horrible tilting effect I initially saw when I looked at a book or monitor. (I wrote a blog or two about it last year.) When I complained, they said it my problem, that I needed to give my eyes time to adjust. They never really did. Plus the person who fitted the glasses never got that right either, and I was always adjusting them so I could see properly. Ugh.

So I tried a new place, and I love this guy. Very soft-spoken, experienced, and kind. He told me about the cataracts, and I ended up scheduling surgery on the right eye.

It happened yesterday morning, after a food-and-water fast since midnight. I’d arranged to be driven to Sebring for the surgery, and because it was still dark, I went out to wait for the driver. He never showed. Didn’t call either, so I ended up driving myself really fast to the med center. Instead of arriving calm and relaxed, I showed up furious with my empty stomach full of acid.

The staff there was very nice, however. Prep proceeded, but they said I couldn’t drive myself home, no way, so I called the nice woman who gave me Salem. We barely know each other, but she dropped everything to pick me up and take me home.

After surgery, I felt pain in that eye area. I was also really groggy (I was put out; having a local didn’t sound like fun). J managed to hit all the lights just right, and I got home in record time. All I wanted to do was sleep. I didn’t even care at that point that my car was sitting in a lot in the next town.

It bothered me later, though. I knew J was tied up Thursday and couldn’t ferry me back to Sebring, plus I didn’t know when I’d be ready to safely drive. They suggest waiting a full 24 hours. I put it out of my mind for the evening and “listened” to Back to the Future I and II because I couldn’t make the effort to watch anything and reading was impossible.

Last night I woke up every couple of hours, and wow my eye hurt. Friends who’d already had this done said they felt no pain. All I can say is “Lucky you!” I ended up tearing the patch off around four, because I couldn’t stand it anymore, lightly covered the eyes with a sterile bandage instead, and took half a Tylenol 3.

When I woke at seven, I took the other half to kill the ice pick behind my eye and applied three different eye drops, five minutes apart. Then I looked through that right eye. It was like trying to see through dirty plastic. I was so disappointed. I expected sharp vision and bright colors. Instead I got dirty plastic. 😦

My doc called me last night and insisted I come in this morning, so I asked someone in the park if they’d drive me. She did. It’s only a few miles away, so we were there in a flash. The doc said my eye looked fine; I just have to be patient while it heals. I’ll be seeing him for another followup Monday.

In the meantime, his assistant heard about how the driver they recommended had abandoned me, and my car was stuck in Sebring, and offered to drive it home tonight after work! I was shocked and touched. What a wonderful thing to do for someone, right? I was gonna impose on J again or hire a different driver to take me there, but now someone has given of her time to bring it back to me.

I tell ya, I’ve really found out how lovely and giving some people can be, and it’s a reminder to pay it forward whenever you can.

The assistant has never driven a hybrid before. I bet that will be interesting. πŸ™‚

About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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10 Responses to Cataract Surgery: Good, Bad, and Ugly

  1. W. Lotus says:

    Kind people are the best! May you heal quickly.

  2. Janet L Ellinger says:

    I wanted to ask you how it went but assumed you wouldn’t be on the computer at all. They told my hubby to expect some pain and his vision was very blurry for awhile. It took a few weeks before his totally cleared. That sucks about the driver. 😦 Nice that kind people stepped in to help. There ARE good people in the world.

    • Fenraven says:

      And what a joy to find them when you need them most. πŸ™‚ I was barely on the computer yesterday, and after writing this blog, I’m retiring the rest of the day to rest and listen to some more TV. Heh.

  3. Allison says:

    I hope you feel better soon. And, wow, it sounds like you got amazingly lucky finding the new doctor, what great people!

    Enjoy your time away from the computer. *hugs*

  4. Lindsaysf says:

    I have that surgery in my future so VERY interested to hear your experience. My cataracts are still mild – enough to qualify but not bad enough that the doctor wanted to schedule me. She said she wanted to wait until I’d be impressed with the results. πŸ™‚ Transportation for us single folks is always a concern. My friends whom I’ve driven around say they will be there to help me, but my experience is that their hearts may be willing but they aren’t necessarily able. It’s reassuring that you’d had such timely help.

    • Fenraven says:

      I feel much better this afternoon than I even did this morning. Haven’t needed any more codeine either. Ate my first “real” meal since Tuesday evening, and it tasted good. πŸ™‚ The right eye still feels weird, like something is slipping around in there, but I assume time will take care of that. Even saw a couple of floaters briefly, looking like dirt on a lens. Heh.

      I think I will wait to get the left eye done until after my next two edits, though. The right eye will be fully healed by then, and the annoyances forgotten (like the pain of childbirth; once that fades, I’ve been told, it’s hard to remember).

  5. Helena Stone says:

    Wow that was, and continues to be, quite a roller coaster of an experience. I hope you’ll heal fast and your vision will be at least as good as you want it to be. Yay for nice people. They’re always good to encounter but especially now when it sometimes feels as if the world is going to shit. Take care.

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