Still healing ... waiting for sight
It's been a long time since I've written ...
I'm doing ok, but I have been mentally better. I've been taking stock of this vision adventure ... realising a few weeks ago that the doctors had given me hope that I'd be able to see by April 2016, and through all of the trials and tribulations, I held on to the hope that I would be able to start moving forward with my life by August 2016.
It's now September 2016 and I'm currently in hiatus as I wait for my next eye surgery in late November. My cornea transplant didn't give me the gift of sight so my doctor is going to try some more surgery, where he puts an incision in the top and bottom of my cornea, away from my vision axis, in the hope that it will stretch my eye and enable it to fall into the correct round eye shape and give me some sight.
I am now looking at another six months of recovery time. I can hear some of my gorgeous, caring friends say 'patience Natalie'. I know patience is important, but today it saddens me to think that 18 months ago I had my cornea transplant; they originally said I'd regain vision within six months, and then at 12 months, and now it's going to be two years. Hopefully. And that's only one my left eye, but right eye has the same condition and has, thank goodness, hung on and given me enough vision to engage in most of life's activities.
The hardest parts are the constant pain and exhaustion I get from my transplant eye trying to see and my brain re-calibrating when there's the slightest change in vision. I can now understand why people say that pain makes them go crazy, pain really takes so much out of you.
To top off my headaches, pain and exhaustion from my cornea transplant, I now also have had a reaction to my pain medication. It's torn my tummy lining and given me the same symptoms as an ulcer: cramps, gas, bloating to the size of an 8 month pregnant lady and inability to eat most foods and my clothes don't fit. And of course, the gut is connected to the brain, so while my gut is in turmoil it is not helping my emotions or anxiety at all.
So I guess we can say I'm a little exhausted... wondering why the transplant didn't work when it does for so many others. Holding the fear inside that I may lose my vision is not a healthy thing, and quite often throughout the year I release that fear and sometimes it sneaks its way back in. This time it's more of a thought of 'doctor's you told me I'd be blind by Christmas 2015, and I've held on this long!'. Actually this is a pretty awesome thing, I am so grateful every day when I can still see, I love how I beat the system :) It's just that little voice that says 'but how long can you beat the system for Natalie.. be careful ...'
Sometimes I look at all the things I could be doing in my career and personal life. My friends are away camping this weekend but I was worried about going in case I got dust in my transplant or if it was too wet, would my transplant start to hurt, how would I cope with the rain? And what if my headaches got too bad, what would I do then, now that I'm not on pain medication?
Some of you know that I'm a reiki healer, I love doing my energy healing and crystal work. I even obtained my Wellness Coaching qualification last month, another career desire I have. But I'm just so tired and in so much pain from the transplant that I barely have enough energy to get through my life jobs (like keeping house and cooking), some socialising and working part time in my normal job, that I haven't been able to do the other things I want to do, the things that so many take for granted. I just want to do all the things!
In the scheme of having vision or being blind, these are little things, and I know in a week or two I'll be over this little burst of reality sadness and I'll find the good things and hope in my life again. And I know that having these moments is a good demonstration of my resilience, courage and strength, cause from the darkest moments comes our appreciation of life and all that it has to offer.
With the love and support and laughter from my amazing friends and family, I know I'll get through this rough patch xoxo