Thursday, August 16, 2007

Fill My Eyes...

Last Friday, Hammy began having some double vision. It only happened when his eyes looked a certain direction. Over the next couple of days, the field in which he did not see double shrank and his eye lids began to swell as if he had an infection. On Monday he went to the Dr who sent him for a CT scan and to a specialist. Today is Thursday and the first day this week he's gotten to go to work. He's seen one GP, two specialists, had two CT scans and an MRI. The second specialist called last night to tell Hammy that one of the muscles behind his eye is swollen. He said that Hammy does not have any underlying illness that would cause this (no MS, no tumor, etc), which is the good news. The bad news is that neither of the specialists nor anyone they have conferred with have any idea what would cause one muscle behind his eye (and between other muscles which are not inflamed) to swell.

One of the Drs prescribed steroids so Hammy began taking them today. He's going around looking like he's winking at everyone because of the double vision. He can see fine with his left eye closed. He's having no problem driving, for instance. He said it was pretty disconcerting trying to work and he's thinking about getting an eye-patch (talk about your "corporate pirate").

I'm very thankful that I'm not a worrier. I know this could be an indication of some much worse illness but I know that we will deal with whatever it is when we come to it.

We have been very lucky (blessed, whatever-I don't think God has spared us from terrible things any more than I think God "curses" or punishes, or rewards people). Our immediate family has never had any serious illnesses. We're all healthy. We've never experienced any life-altering accidents or catastrophes. In our extended family, the only people to die have been elderly family members who's "time had come". My mother and brother both suffer from serious mental illnesses but we have the resources and the wherewithal to get them effective care (when they will take their meds and comply with the recommendations of their mental health providers-naturally).

I suspect that whatever is causing Hammy's problem will eventually fade away and we'll never know what it's cause was. I hope I can carry this feeling of gratitude for our health and wealth.

Our family is not rich by our society's standards but we are by world/historical comparisons. We've got so much. We've got enough that we have the time and energy to waste a lot of it on frivolous activities. We have insurance. We have dental care. We can afford new glasses when we need them and clothes and shoes. I can buy the new Sinead O'Coner cd when I get the whim because we've got the extra cash to do so. I believe I am in this life with so much comfort and ease so that I don't have to spend my time fretting and scraping and can share my wealth of time, energy and resources helping others. With privilege comes responsibility. Right now, though, what am I doing to live up to this standard I claim to believe in? Not much. I think this health episode is a wake-up call to my conscience (not necessarily from God. It is for us to discover the meaning in life-the context for each lesson). It is time for me to get out of my comfort zone and give to others. Volunteering at the library is not enough-I do that for fun, because I love the library. I need to be out in the world being God's hands.

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