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Last week, I was feeling well enough to go back to teaching and it went so well that it felt like nothing ever happened. My energy feels restored, so I go on as though nothing ever happened, expecting that everyone else feels that I am all healed and it is over and passed and I am good as new. Or, so I think. So then, why do I fantasize about heading back to my nest on the sofa? I must be lazy, right? Or, so I think.
Yes, the recovery has felt lighting-fast, besides a few visible stitches that I cover up with my hair, I look great - better than in twelve years. But, I am also sliced from hip to hip. That part isn't visible. Not even to me. I don't care to look at it, if I do, it is real. Sure, there is still swelling in my head. I don't even want to look at that because I am waiting for the final result, to see if I am really back or back or not. Or, should I just settle for better - because it most definitely is.
But, for crying out loud, it has actually only been three weeks out! I should still be on the sofa being waited on hand and foot, right? I should still get to play the invalid card. But I can't, because I am not. Not really. But I am. At least a little.
And yes, I want to be known as Wonder Woman who battles the worst and comes back with a twirl. And I am. To a degree. At least, that is what I show the world, and the world believes me, because why shouldn't they, I am a fabulous actor, right? End of drama. End of story.
But, this is a bizarre situation for me and I have no idea where to go next. When I lost my vision and gained my eye-patch and my new identity it was unique and I did it with aplomb. 'Cause, why not? I had to make something of it (and truth be told, the boys like the pirate ladies). But even then, the adults of the world wondered if I was just trying too hard (okay, my projection, perhaps, but I can't ignore the looks I got), but the kids of the world were wonderful "Hey, what's up with your eye?" "It's broken." "Can I see it?" "Sure." "Okay, cool." Done.
So, now is the reverse. That patch and my glasses have been my deal for a decade and I am at a loss as to how to integrate them now. My vision is still the same, a strip of peripheral vision on the left, that strip being permanent double-vision that, due to the absence of an eye socket, has my optic nerve (what is left), in contact with the blood flow to my brain and pulsates with that beat. It also isn't anchored and moves about at will, making see or concentrating when needed next to impossible. The other day, while going without my patch or glasses, I bumped into someone on the left - I used to be able to turn to them and explain without words. Can't do that any more. I have to spend half the time with glasses with an obstructed lens and I am confused.
To tell you all the truth, I kept my glasses and patches even when I could have done without them purely out of vanities sake. My eye was monstrous at first (my take) and after the second surgery, not as bad, but not normal by any stretch. I was too vain to let the world see the less than perfect, droopy, dopey (my words) eye without explanation. I was too insecure to go back on stage, unless, of course. Lynn Musgrave made me (thank you, Lynn). But I don't know how to re-enter the world. I have no idea who this new person is, or even what she wants.
As mentioned before, this last year has been, bar none, the most excruciating of my life, and if you know me, you know I have had some doozies. So, at this point, I don't know if this it what I deserve, or if this is what I deserve. Angel, Devil or Great Gazoo.
What I do know is that I have to sit, even if I feel guilty. I have to tell the world if I am having difficulty. I do not have to decide who sits on my shoulder, because I am the only one occupying that position and I get to choose.
p.s.Before/During/After, if all posts correctly.
p.p.s. Not looking for validation. Just telling my story.
Site created on May 5, 2007
My Grandmother had glaucoma, so it wasn't a complete surprise to discover that I, too, have high eye pressure. Drops have kept the pressure at bay for the most part and I have had no significant vision difficulties as a result of glaucoma. It never occurred to me that the puffiness in my left eye was anything other than allergies or a poorly draining duct. After doctors, aethetitians and expensive eye creams didn't fix the problem, I once again asked my ophthalmologist about it during a recent check up. He took one look and said "That isn't a puffy eye, that is your eyeball popping out." Wow. A few tests later and it was determined that I most likely have a Sphenoid Wing Meningioma which is a generally benign brain tumor. My tumor, however, is an extensive flat one, and it travels out in various directions, one of which is into my left orbit (eye socket). It looks like is has destroyed the bone, so they are going to take as much of that section as they can, and then we will zap the rest with radiation. This whole ride has been incredibly surreal and if I wake up to find it all a dream, I apologize for the inconvenience.
At the moment, I have some vision problems, assorted wierd sensations, a contstant ringing in my ears and a Picasso-esque set of mis-matched eyes, but those could be attributed to so many things - Motherhood, aging and a past of debauchery.........
It is my ferverent hope that this surgery will once and for all remove the leftover psycholigical debris that is cluttering up my brain (like, all of 1984, for instance), and replace tha space with such useful things as Universal Love and the ability to do math. Plus, I am going to request some bionics while they are in there (where are you Oscar Goldman?).
I appreciate your visit and thank you so much for the thoughts and well wishes.
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