Yesterday afternoon, I was standing in the kitchen talking to my 15-year-old son, contemplating the soon cooking of dinner.
Something small and black zoomed past my line of vision as though it were inches from my face.
I looked around for what I figured must be a fly, but saw nothing.
Seconds later I saw it again, but when I turned my head to locate it, again it was nowhere to be seen.
“Did you see a fly?” I asked my son.
“No, I didn’t,” he said.
“It’s being a stealth bomber,” I said. “I know I saw something but then it disappeared.”
It happened a few more times over the next couple minutes. By then, I figured out it wasn’t a fly but was something going wrong in my eye.
Then I saw what looked like a bolt of lightning shoot down the far right periphery of my right eye. That happened a few times over the next hour.
There was no pain. Just weird sights. I knew them to be indicative of a possible retinal tear or retinal detachment, but I was hopeful/shocked/in denial.
Curious if there was a less sinister diagnosis into which they might fit, I did a quick internet search. Torn retinas and detached retinas were all I saw.
Needing to get meal prep underway, I tried to ignore the slight curtain of blur to the right and kept my eyes from sudden movements.
After dinner (which was, in case you are interested, teriyaki pork stir fry, involving marinated pork tenderloin, sliced white onion, bell peppers, broccoli, and a cubed pineapple, with sesame oil and sesame seeds, served over brown basmati rice), I called the BC Nurse Line.
The nurses can’t diagnose or even suggest differential diagnoses. Based on what I told them, they urged me to “get ye to a hospital post haste”.
Once I got to the hospital, a nurse got me to read letters from a distance with each eye. Then the emergency physician checked my peripheral vision and looked into my eye with instruments and bright light.
The conclusion? Nothing suggested a retinal detachment or tear. Yaay!
But what was wrong, then?
The physician told me to go to my eye doctor the next day. He wrote a note for me to give to him.
I did so, and am pleased to report that my right eye has no retinal concern. It is a lesser evil indeed, to do with the vitreous.
My optometrist said it is nothing requiring surgery or treatment, that it will merely be annoying, and that it should lessen and go away. If things worsen suddenly, I am to call him. He has referred me on to an ophthalmologist in Kamloops, to be seen within the next month.
Something weird the optometrist noticed, though, was evidence in my other eye of an old retinal tear. Scar tissue had formed to hold it together. He said it looked to be at least a year old. I never had any symptoms to cause me concern.
These things just happen with age and supposedly there isn’t anything that can prevent them.
I am grateful to see with eyes that are relatively healthy. But one never knows when sight, like anything physical, can break or die. And so I am thanking Jesus for my hope beyond this sin-damaged flesh, in eternity where a new body will be mine, and decay of any sort will be no more!
And I am grateful for the people who care for me. Thanks for reading.