Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Eyes Have It

Time for another healing update! Things are progressing nicely... slowly, but nicely!

My daily routine involves getting up around 6am and submerging myself in the spa for a soak and stretch. We only got the spa a couple weeks before the surgery and I'm so glad we did! Every morning I have spent a couple of hours in the warm bubbly water stretching my sore right thigh. Yep, it’s still sore! 

For the past few nights I have rolled onto that side (my favourite way to sleep) and tried to find a comfortable position. It feels like I’m laying on a hardback book under my thigh. The book gets a little smaller each night. Thursday was my best night sleep since the surgery. I went to bed at 10pm and didn’t get up until 7am. That’s 9 hours! A usual night (like last night) is about 6 hours sleep. I still prop myself up with a few pillows and sleep on my back to keep my head well above the rest of my body. This keeps the thumping down.

Because of the great sleep Thursday night, I was feeling great Friday. The strength in the left side of my face was stronger than it has been for over a week. I took pain meds at 7:30am. The next time I needed them was 3:30pm. And then again at 10:30pm. That’s the best I’ve done since the surgery. So, as we all know, sleep is important!

The interesting thing about the Panadol and Neurofin is that I don’t often need it for pain anymore. Occasionally I feel some head pain, but the main reason I take the meds is because of the other stuff that happens in my head. First, my left ear (the deaf one) starts hearing the sound of a roaring sea as well as the usual tea kettle. It starts quiet and builds to a tempestuous crescendo. Then the right ear (the good one) starts to get muffled. Voices and sounds seem to be at a distance. They move away slowly until concentrating on any sound is very difficult. Then my vision starts to blur. And shortly after that, the headache starts. That process used to happen, from tempest to thumping, in 10 minutes or less. Now it can take hours. So, depending on my level of human interaction and activity, I decide when to take the meds.

During the past week I have tried to be active. Monday, I went shopping with Rachael for a couple of hours. We walked from shop to shop at Eastland. I sat on a variety of benches. Rachael explored shops. I had a look in a few shops, too. When we got home I was wasted. Tuesday I went to the optometrist and got my eyes tested. I was there for a couple of hours and that tired me out. Wednesday I went to the doctor for a 1 week checkup after the staple removal. Thursday I was absolutely smashed. And it was 37 degrees! I sat on the couch all day, watched tennis and took pain meds often. I felt like I’d gone backwards in time by a week or more. Then I had that great night sleep and my spirits were lifted! 

I’m so glad I went to see the eye doctor! He looked into my eyes with his fancy machines for quite awhile and did the usual sight tests. He then told me that my left eye was concave below the pupil because it was severely dehydrated. He said if my eye wasn’t less sensitive due to the tumour I would be in a lot of pain. Evidently, I have been sleeping with my left partially open for months. He recommended I use medicated eye drops called “Blink Intensive Tears” every 30 minutes while I am awake and apply lacrilube at night before taping the eye closed for the night. I am amazed how much this has helped. My left eye was very blurry. The optometrist didn’t say how long to keep doing it, so I’ll keep going until the supplies run out.

The reason I went to the optometrist was to get glasses. I have known for 6 months or so that I needed them. But, when I found out about the tumour I decided to wait for the glasses until after the surgery. I thought the tumour might be having some effect on my vision. Considering the dryness, I was right. But, it still would have been wiser to go to the eye doctor before the tumour surgery as he would have discovered the dehydration and started me on the drops before the dryness was so bad. 

Yesterday, my glasses arrived. WOW! I didn’t realise how much of the world around me I was missing. There is so much detail to be enjoyed. Australian birds are even more beautiful than I thought! I put seeds on our outdoor table each morning so I can watch the birds while I sit in the spa. Right now (it’s 7:10am Saturday morning) there are two rosellas and a king parrot on the table and two more rosellas under the table - all happily cracking seeds. (I just had to come back - 7:28am - two rainbow lorikeets on the table. They are my favourite!) Reading is also comfortable again. I’m loving the glasses!

Tuesday, Jenny and I will journey back into the city for my post-op CT Scan. I am quite sure they will discover that I am healing very well. So far I have been very blessed. There have been no complications with my surgery or healing. Thank goodness for great doctors, nurses, family and friends. Thanks again for all your thoughts, prayers and words of affirmation.


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