As most of my faithful blogging friends know, I thoroughly enjoy wildlife photography. The recent Nashville workshop featured Americana subject matter, so wildlife was in extremely short supply. An unfriendly, resident cat at Cannonsburgh Village in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, was the only critter spotted during that week. I snuck up on him while napping and quickly got off a few shots before he fled the scene.
I had muscle surgery last Friday on my left eye. That makes four eye surgeries in two years. Sigh. I have been seeing significant double vision for well over a year now. The imbalance occurred when I developed a prolapsed lacrimal gland in my right eye, and swelling from surgical correction worsened the degree of strabismus.
I originally developed strabismus, with my right eye turning inward, as a child. I lived with the condition until I had surgery about 25 years ago. It was largely corrected, but binocular vision still remained off by a couple of degrees. It has been very difficult to adjust to last year’s visual developments. My brain could not simply ignore the double vision. It has been confusing and debilitating, on top of everything else I’ve had going on (caregiver, husband dying from cancer, hernia surgery, widowhood, broken foot, etc.)
Since my right eye previously had muscle surgery, it was not a good candidate for a repeat operation. Thankfully, both eyes track. The left eye – which didn’t turn inward - had to be the one adjusted. It sounds illogical, but it’s not.
Enough of the history lesson, and fast forward to the present! The doctor is very skilled and experienced. He concluded that my condition was stable and a surgical solution was the best option. I have a nice travel break right now and can significantly heal up before my next trip. A friend graciously offered to take off from work and accompany me for the day, lending emotional support. God bless dear friends like her. The family across the street had fun taking care of Angel for the day. I sweated out possible complications from anesthesia, but I got through surgery and recovery just fine. Based on vision tests after I got most of the anesthesia out of my system, binocular vision was right on the money. I could see in 3D for the first time in over 50 years.
Amazing. All of you with binocular vision should be getting down on your knees every day and thanking God for such a cherished gift. Seriously.
I didn’t get to enjoy the effect for very long. The surgeon loosened up temporary slipknots to bring the vision just slightly off. As the muscles heal, they will tighten up again should bring it all back together again.
In the meantime, my left eye is blood red and mucky. As you can imagine, visual acuity is not very good at the moment because of the muck. There are multiple stitches (six are visible), and they scratch like a Brillo pad. It’s annoying, but the temporary bother is a small price to pay. My eyes look straight and are working together. Antibiotic and steroid eye drops are required four times a day. Total recovery time is estimated to be about six weeks, with some minor precautions in the first two weeks. The doctor called me over the weekend, quizzed me about how I felt, and assured me that everything was normal. I’ll see him tomorrow for the first of several post-op checkups.
I deeply appreciate your prayers as I heal and go forward in this latest life chapter!