With an eye to the future

Three weeks after The Magic Carpet was published, the book is doing well and its author is booked for a trabeculectomy operation at London’s Moorfields eye hospital. A “trab”, as we carelessly throw the name about in these parts, involves inserting a small bleb (shunt, drain, thing) under the upper eyelid to relieve pressure of fluid on the eye, which in my case is causing significant sight loss. If successful, they’ll do the other eye in a few months. Just a trab. If you say it really fast you can almost forget it’s happening.

I have been in a right tizz about this for months. I joined an online forum and retreated in terror at the horror stories they told. A calm and gentle person at the International Glaucoma Association pointed out that people for whom things go wrong will always be more likely to post than those for whom all runs smoothly, and that my highly respected  surgeon Mr Gazzard is at the cutting edge (no, she used a more fortunate term than that).

But today I’m fairly calm, if you can be calm when filled with adrenalin, fresh mango scrambled eggs and toast that came out exactly right for once, and two carefully measured cups of tea all finished and washed up by 6.59am. I got up early for what I call the condemned woman’s breakfast before my enforced fast. The term makes my partner wince – gallows humour is not something we share.

Glaucoma
This week’s recommended reading

I wasn’t going to mention any of this on the blog at all, or at least not until afterwards, as it all seems a bit private and not much to do with books which is what the blog is supposed to concern itself with. But now I’m finding it’s a good way of passing a long coffeeless lunchless morning. Next I’ll wash my hair as thoroughly as I can (no bending forwards or getting eyes wet for 4-8 weeks), and pack my overnight bag as we’re staying in a cheap chain hotel near the hospital because this will be day surgery (note: others will be in the house). I was initially offered an overnight room in the patients’ hostel, as I’ll have blurred vision in one eye and a patch over the other, be recovering from a GA, and have to be seen in clinic the following day anyway. Then the local council fire inspectors came along and condemned the building, so the Holiday Inn will be cleaner than the tube (advised not to use public transport) and cheaper than a taxi back to the suburbs from central London. It will be reassuring to be close to their A and E dept but we won’t use the swimming pool, the bar, or the amenities of famously cool, stinkingly trendy Shoreditch. (I do wish our hellish government would retreat from stupid Brexit and fund the NHS instead. I know the staff will be skilled and kind, and the clinical care will be excellent, but I’ve discovered before that it comes utterly without frills. And don’t say what do I expect for free – I’ve paid a lifetime’s National Insurance and tax for the NHS and I’ve never abused it the way certain politicians do.)

When I start ranting I know it’s time for that hair wash. Excuse this post if less carefully edited than usual – it was a bit of an afterthought/timefiller/timewaster/distraction/delete as applicable. And if no other chance comes, huge thanks in advance to staff at Moorfields Eye Hospital and to my optician who originally diagnosed this thing – GET YOURSELVES TESTED FOLKS! To that end, please share this post as you think fit. Must remember to take the nail varnish off! See you – a bit fuzzy perhaps – on the other side!

©Jessica Norrie 2019

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25 thoughts on “With an eye to the future

  1. Sending you happy healing thoughts. That is scary business, I know because I too have a problem with pressure behind the eye. I am lucky I’m diligent with my eye appointments as I had laser eye surgery to alleviate the pressure and drain. I was petrified when they told me I could have been totally blind in 6 months – in both eyes if not caught. They lasered pinholes through my irises. They first numbed my eyeballs, which to me was the worst part. I didn’t feel the lasering, but the world was a fuzzy black film for about a day and a half, then I was fine. Zero pain. Good luck and stay diligent ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Gosh how frightening for you. We must all be vigilant… This will take a bit longer to recover from but has been very skilfully done and should be worth it. Please excuse if my interactions re limited for next few weeks though!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. Will do update but oddly find easiest to look at phone screen atm and that’s not good for writing blog posts. All going well so far though and I have huge admiration for surgeon at Moorfields.

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  2. I am sure it will go very well Jessica but I can imagine your nervous anticipation. But you will be back with us with you keen eye on the world of literature before you know it. Thinking of you and if you are bored after your hair wash you post went out earlier.. https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2019/08/15/posts-from-my-archives-the-literary-column-with-jessica-norrie-can-your-protagonist-be-too-old-to-be-interesting/ See you on the other side….hugs Sally

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