Sunday, June 28, 2020

Sunday Stroke Survival: The Eyes Have It

It's been it's a week of vision woes for me. Mel's service cat, Whirling Dervish, has had a lifetime of sinus troubles and allergies. Her lion type infected sneezes has been the cause of my last two sinus infections. She loves to share so much!

Unfortunately, she doesn't get better after she shares it like with a cold. Our lower cabinets, walls, and laptop screens are covered in what Mel calls 'Derv's snot art.' We are constantly cleaning it off.

The weather hasn't cooperated one bit this year was a very rainy spring. Hello leaf mold which sets both off. It's a regular symphony of congested sneezes. As luck would have it last week, One of Derv's sneezes caught ne in the face. As usual I washed up with soap and warm water, and didn't think anymore about it until two days later.

I awoke to a swollen and caked shut right eye, After carefully dousing the eye with warm water, I managed to clear the eye enough to open my eye. There at the corner of the eye was pus. Then came the treatment phase. Three to four times a day I applied warm compresses to the eye. Next came the expressing the infection by running two fingers from the outside corner of each lid towards the nose. Each time, I repeated this maneuver until I couldn't express any more pus out of it. Each day the pressure on my eyeball lessened. After three days, the swelling, soreness, and I couldn't express anymore pus out of the lids. I deemed myself cured  and went outside to garden...not that I wasn't gardening with this going on.

In the garden, it was a buzz with various pollinators and mosquitoes flying about. I was intent on picking chicken greens. To other non-homesteading folks, it's called weeding. As I gathered the greens the pollinators buzzed all around me. One flew under the brim of my straw hat and came close to my left eye, I swatted it away with my gloved hand and continued pulling the greens. I was rushing to fill the 5-gallon bucket because I had an echocardiogram appointment. I fed the chickens their greens and Mel was rushing me to come on.  I went into house, washed my hands, and threw some water on my face. Grabbing a paper towel, I wiped my face dry as I headed out the door.

As we drove to the cardiologist's office I noticed a painful stinging sensation by my eye. I pulled down the mirror on the visor and took a look at the spot. The lower lid was red and swollen. Although it was painful to the touch, it itched something crazy. I had no idea what had bitten or stung me. The one thing I knew for certain was it wasn't a bee sting. I'm deathly allergic to those and my breathing wasn't compromised within 15 minutes as usual.

When we got home, my eye was almost swollen shut. I applied ice to my eye to reduce the swelling. A small blister had formed at the bite/sting area. During the night it had ruptured leaving a tiny ulcer about 1/16th of inch below the lashes. I spent the next couple days applying ice to reduce the swelling. The ulcer didn't close and kept oozing. I put pressure on either side of the ulcer and could see a tiny white speck in the center of opening. I took a Q-tip soaked with hydrogen peroxide and scraped the ulcer to remove it. Getting hydrogen peroxide in your eye is a whole lot less painful than alcohol.

By removing that speck of pus/venom/whatever it was, healing started within hours. The swelling and redness lessened as did the itchy feel. Within days, the ulcer healed over and I was finally able to see clearly out of my left eye again. So this past week...the eyes had it. Hopefully next week will be better.

Nothing is impossible.


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