Friday’s Feast #188
Name something you would categorize as weird.
Peanut butter and tuna sandwiches. My oldest son used to eat them every day. In fact, for awhile, I had to make them and pack them in his lunch. Thank God he outgrew that phase!
What color was the last piece of food you ate?
Brownish-gold. The color of caramel.
On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being highest, how much do you enjoy being alone?
Fill in the blank: I will _________ vote for ___________ in _______.
I will definitely not vote for Hilary Clinton in November 2008 (or ever).
Describe your sleeping habits.
I don’t sleep a lot, but when I do, my television is always on. Always. All night long. I wake up, watch for a few minutes or a little while, and then go back to sleep. When I wake up on weekdays, I hear the television and am acclimated before I open my eyes. I can tell approximately what time it is by the newscaster’s voice. I also leave nightlights on in various locations around the house. I cannot tolerate ever being in a dark room.
I began leaving the television on all night while I was undergoing a series of surgeries for a detached retina. I was ordered to lie on my stomach for two and a half weeks following the first surgery. I could not get up except to use the bathroom, shower, and sit in a chair to eat. But even then, I had to keep my head down.
All I could do was lie there. I was bored out of my mind. So BigBob put the television on the floor by the bed, positioned so that I could keep my head at the right angle — with the left side of my face sort of buried in the pillow — and see the screen with my other eye. He also put the DVD player there, and brought me lots of movies. Since I couldn’t do anything all day, I wasn’t tired and got my days and nights all mixed up because I just napped sporadically.
My friends and colleagues were wonderful about calling and cheering me up. My good friend, Clint Ritchie, called me a lot and encouraged me with discussions about positive thinking and visualizing my eye completely healed.
BigBob had to take time off work to do everything around the house and, primarily, take care of the boys.
That surgery failed and I had another one soon after. That time, the surgeon inserted silicone oil into my eye and I had to sleep exclusively on my left side for nearly a year. The theory is that the oil is a dense, heavy substance. When you lie on the side opposite the site of the retinal tear, the oil pushes against the retina and helps it adhere. It did — the retina has not detached again.
Unfortunately, the oil destroys the eye’s lens. I had the most unbelievable cataract! When my eye was dilated, there was a huge white dot right in the center, making me look like a creature from a science fiction movie. Because the cataract was so bad, my left eye quit working and my brain adapted by directing my right eye to take over completely which meant that my eyes were not tracking together. I was very self-conscious about the fact that my left eye wandered. In fact, when I look at a picture of myself today, I can still detect that my eyes are not perfectly aligned / coordinated. They never will be. But that’s all right . . . I’m just thankful that I can see anything.
Another surgery to remove the oil and allow the vitreous humor to regenerate was followed by cataract surgery a few months later. But the oil also created a secondary cataract, so the last step, a few months after that, was a laser procedure to destroy the lens holder once they were sure that the lens was securely implanted.
Essentially, I never reverted to a normal sleep life following that period in my life. Small price to pay, though. I don’t complain.
What caused the retinal detachment? Stress. Six years spent litigating Conservatorship of Wendland, to be exact. When I say “I could never handle another case like that,” I mean it.