Another lesson learned

I have already mentioned earlier that my stupid eye trouble taught me a few lessons (see “Lessons Learned”). Now I have come to the conclusion that these months have taught me something else, a bit disturbing, but still valuable.

Looking back at last November, December and even part of January, I see a different me than I normally am. I spent a lot of time lying on the couch, eyes closed. I meant, there were perfectly good reasons for that – my eye hurt a lot, or the stupid lens was misbehaving, and the only thing to make it better was put some drops in and give it some rest. But all this time of almost dozing off on my couch, with not much light around me – because it was a) wintertime, so not much light from outside, and b) bright light was not nice for my eye – did something to my mood, to my thoughts, to my normally quite energetic being. I seemed to be tired a lot, lost my drive, did not want to do anything anymore. Of course I had the perfect excuse – my eye. But I could have switched the radio on, listened to music, make plans in my head for my writing. I almost never did these kind of things. I just drifted away. After a while I would pull myself together, took care of the necessary things in the house. I would wash and clean and cook for my family, but besides that everything was on hold.

I think that for the first time in my life I came close to being something you could call “depressed”. Not my kind of thing at all, I would have told you before. I am either happy or angry or sad, but always with lots of emotion involved. I am not the passive type at all. But during this winter, I just let things happen to me. I let my eye trouble control me, instead the other way round. I waited for suggestions from the doctor, instead of researching myself, instead of demanding solutions. I just waited and hoped that everything would be over soon.

But when it took so much longer than I had expected, at one point I decided it needed to stop. Something needed to change. Luckily at that time I also saw a doctor who sympathised and talked and thought about how she could help, which gave me some sort of boost. Her idea of putting in much more drops (just moisturising ones, not medication) helped a lot to stabilise the lens that bothered me. Which resulted in me seeing better, having less problems. So my mind finally stopped going in circles around my eye trouble and starting thinking other thoughts again. And I finally got off that couch and into action again.

Now the lens has been removed for almost two months and my eye, while not completely back to normal, is behaving reasonably well.

But I keep thinking: wow. Is it that easy to loose yourself in grey thoughts? Is it that easy to let go, that easy to turn into someone you never thought you’d be?

I hope it makes me more alert, more aware the importance of staying active, both bodily and in your mind.

It certainly made me more sympathetic towards people who suffer from “grey mood” more often.

It certainly gave me a lot to think about.

Is it really April already?

I cannot believe more than a quarter of 2015 has passed already. It still seems the year has just started. And although I never intended to turn this blog into some sort of personal health rambling, I feel I need to somehow recapture the last months. Just to somehow bundle them up together for myself.

Ok. January. Started nice with watching fireworks on our balcony with the boys sitting on older one’s loft bed, staring out of the windows and pointing out the details to each other. “Look, the red one over there.” “There, the sparkly one!” “Wow, gold!” – But somehow in the course of the next day, I matched to catch the mother of all colds that kept me snotty and coughing and weak for almost the rest of the month. Small consolation that it seemed the whole of this country got the same and the many of the people I talked to where of worse, with fever and such. But still, I spent loads of the time on the sofa again sipping tea. (That sofa was bought as a cuddly reading sofa, not as a constant recovery site!)

When January and my cold where finally over, something new poked up its head: The umbilical hernia (needed to look up that one in the dictionary!) I have been living with since the last pregnancy suddenly turned from being a small beauty issue (a blotched belly button… who cares!) into a major pain. Literally. Hurt and was swollen. So I went to my GP, who sent me to the hospital, where I spent the entire afternoon waiting at the emergency help (don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining – it was very busy there and I obviously was not at the point of dying). They finally managed to sort of push the thingy back again and by that unblocking whatever was blocked. Pain gone. Relief. But they told me it needed surgery to not happen again. So, beginning of February I had my first “real” surgery with general anaesthetic. I have to admit I was a bit nervous, but it all went fine and I felt pretty good pretty quickly again. Two more days on that sofa… but in no time I was up again, just not allowed to carry anything more than my tea pot (ok, I made that one up – but in the beginning I really did not carry anything). Which was at least one opportunity to teach the boys to carry their own stuff, instead of dropping everything on the floor and letting Mummy be the family donkey.

In between of course my eye called for a bit of attention here and there, I experimented with different types of drops to keep it moist and happy, counting the days until that stupid bandage lens finally would come out. I know it was supposed to help my eye to heal, but in the end it was more of a trouble maker instead. The eye was much drier with it, and when it got too dry the lens started to either scratch or move around so that I could not see properly.

BUT: End of March finally came and the doctor removed the lens (I was so nervous … afraid he would say it needed to stay in longer…)! Yippee!!

First it felt like he had not taken something out but put something in. An additional eye lash for example that was facing the wrong way. But I told myself to be patient. After more than half a year of wearing the lens, it was logical the eye needed some time to adapt to its “freedom”.

And it slowly does. I am still putting in some drops to keep it happy, but it is needing less and less of them. The sun glasses, my constant companion since last summer, stay in my pocket more and more. I read more. I use the computer more. I start watching movies on the tv more. (Have not dared to go to the movie theatre yet, but that will come too.) Still it feels tired and grumpy sometimes, and I am very careful to react quickly to that. I really don’t want to get a relapse.

But I am hopeful.

And YES, my eye-sight is good again! I guess most of the feeling of short-sightedness was caused by the lens being dirty or making the eye dry so that it had not enough moisture for seeing properly or whatever.

And it is spring in my garden, the leaves come out, the clematis has started to climb again and yesterday the first three blossoms on the plum tree have opened – immediately visited by at least one excited hungry bee.

So, yes, I am happy.

(But I will resist the temptation of starting to read my favourite blogs today, on top of writing this post. Not too much too quickly. One thing at a time.)

Have a nice sunny week, everyone!

Eye Trouble Continued – My endless story

Isn’t it ironic? Roughly two months ago I happily announced my blog anniversary, stating how much I like the whole blogging thing and that I would definitely go on.

A few days later my stupid eye injury raised its ugly head again, so I cut down on screen time. Obviously this blog is the first to feel it – I do rely on email for a lot of daily communication, but blogging is something that is not strictly necessary. As is reading books and writing … all the things I love to do. You can imagine my humour dropped.

November was not great, but December was worse. I spent a lot of time lying on the couch with my eyes closed. I managed to attend all the important pre-Christmas events at school (Christmas concerts, Christmas dinner for the children), we spent Christmas at the in-laws (saved me some cooking at least), but looking back now it all seems a blur.

It slowly got better and the last few days I started feeling like me again – the active me with plans and ideas, running up and down the stairs in my house (yep, we are back home again), tackling the chaos, shopping for groceries, that kind of stuff. I actually opened the book I got for Christmas from my mother-in-law, and yes, I dare look at the computer screen for more than a few minutes in a row.

And I stopped wearing my sun glasses in the house.

I had a chat with my eye-specialist (if you could call it a “chat”: I kept asking questions and he mumbled answers). We agreed to give it one more chance: four more weeks wearing that contact lens for protection, then take it off and see how it goes. If it turns bad again (with or without the lens), I will have another treatment, this time with a laser – apparently the success rate is much higher than with the one I had before, so fingers crossed. (Yes, of course: when I heard that I was thinking: why didn’t we do that in the first place then??? But it is a bit more expensive, and the insurance wants to try the cheaper one first, thank you very much.) If I interpret his mumbling correctly, my eye doctor thinks the cornea does look better and better, so maybe I have a chance to dodge another operation after all. We will see.

So hopefully it continues to go up from here – and I can start thinking and writing about other stuff again. And catch up with my reading… Just thinking of all the cool posts I have missed…. even if I only try to catch up with my four or five favourite blogs, this will mean a lot of work for my eye… But I will try to be patient, finish this post and then go offline again. Start the catching up tomorrow, maybe.

It is almost end of the year. Time to close a few not so nice chapters. Time to move on and concentrate on the nice things. There were a lot of those in 2014 too.