My beloved wife, Kitsap River, has been suffering from cataracts for several years. A cataract is a clouding of the lens inside the eye which leads to blurring of vision, and is the most common cause of blindness.
Kitsap River has cataracts in both eyes, which we suspect has been exacerbated by the very dosages of prednisone that helps her keep her kidney transplant, although in retrospect she's shown symptoms of these cataracts for at least the past decade. These include difficulty appreciating colors and changes in contrast, in driving, reading, and recognizing faces, and problems coping with glare from bright lights.
Treatment for cataracts involves surgical replacement of the occluded lens with an artificial implant.
This afternoon, Kitsap River goes under the knife.
(More below the ixtl...)
Update: We're home. The operation went smoothly and we expect a complete recovery. River is resting quietly in a darkened room, and I'm sitting on the bed beside her attending to her needs (and delivering well-deserved mojo to all who have commented here). I'm sure she'll post her own diary tomorrow on the experience.
Once again, thank you all for your supporting energy and well wishes. May Apollo Phsyician, and Aesculepius, and Hygeia, and Panacea, and all the gods and goddesses keep you safe from every ailment.
They're only doing her right eye today; the left eye will be operated on sometime later this year.
The procedure is supposed to be routine, with a 90% success rate and few complications. Nonetheless, it's not without risk — no surgery is risk-free — and Kitsap River depends on her eyes so much more than you might think. She hasn't been able to drive safely at night for as long as I've known her, nor has she been able to create the visual artistry for which she was once known.
Even if fully successful, this won't completely correct her vision. She has astigmatism not only in her lenses but in the corneas as well, so she will need to wear glasses more often than she does now.
Moreover, the natural lens's ability to flex and focus will be replaced by fixed-focus artificial lenses — one suited for distance vision in one eye and close vision in the other — and her brain will need time to re-learn how to see clearly via one or the other eye.
Kitsap River is the bravest person I've ever known, and she's putting up a very brave front about this. Just the other day she said, "Well, if anything goes wrong with this operation I've still got the other eye," knowing full well that the other eye still needs the same surgery. But I know that in her heart of hearts, she is as frightened about this as can be. (As would be you or I, myself even more since I am so very sensitive about my eyes.)
I'll be with her today, and I'd like to be able to tell her that you will be with her in spirit as well. Please, via whatever method you deem appropriate, take a moment between 1:30 and 2:30 Pacific Time today to send her your healing energies, your support, and most especially your love.