It started out as a standard Wednesday. I crawled out of bed after hitting snooze too many times, brushed my teeth, grabbed my glasses so I could see more than just my hand in front of my face, made a little breakfast, and sat down to read the morning news and answer a few emails. I hopped in the shower, got dressed, and about 9ish, I called my clients to confirm this afternoon's appointments.
Then my right eye started to hurt and itch. It felt like I had an eye lash in it, so I gently rubbed it to remove the lash. A few minutes of rubbing later and the eye was now throbbing, so I decided to grab a mirror and see where that nasty eye lash was hiding. Looking in the mirror, I was shocked to discover that my eye looked something like this:
That's clearly NOT my eye, as my eyes are blue, but you get the idea. Plus, my eye was swollen (with slight ooze) and I could see what appeared to be a divot and bump on my eye, on the edge of the iris and the sclera (the white part), at about 3:00, as you look at the eye. I had a hunch I wasn't dealing with a stray eye lash.
Not entirely convinced I wasn't overreacting, I called my eye doctor who, of course, was able to fit me in at the exact time my busy afternoon with clients would begin. I said I'd be there and called my clients (who I'd just confirmed) to reschedule.
Seconds after gazing into my eye with a light bright enough to blind me, my optometrist gave me the very official diagnosis of "What the Hell did you do? You have a HUGE divot on your cornea!" I found it interesting that she called it a divot, since that was part of what I thought I saw in the mirror earlier. She also told me that my cornea was much thinner than it should be and she was sending me immediately (do not pass Go or collect $200) to a corneal specialist. Thinking I could still salvage part of my afternoon, I suggested I wait until morning. She laughed as she called the specialist. Not a regular ophthalmologist, mind you, a cornea specialist.
About 45 minutes later, the corneal specialist looked in my eye and declared that I had an ulcer on my cornea, but that I was incredibly fortunate because the ulcer was just barely on the edge of my iris and not in my line of sight. This means that when it heals, any scar tissue won't interfere with my vision.
Ah yes, it's feeling like deja vu all over again.
Fourteen years ago (almost exactly), I was diagnosed with a corneal ulcer on my left eye in exactly the same position while on vacation. What are the odds of that?
Three major differences between the ulcer in 1996 and today (aside from the one in 1996 being in my left eye and today's ulcer in my right eye). First, I didn't come home tonight with a sexy patch covering my eye. Have you ever tried meeting a hot single man for a vacation fling while wearing a patch on your eye? Trust me, it's a non-starter. Second, my vacation isn't ruined (since ya know, I'm safely back at home) by sidelining me with crazy rules of "no swimming, no water skiing, and stay away from blowing sand." Um, sure doc. Did I mention I'm on VACATION??? And third, today none of my smartypants friends have said to me, "Jess, you know what's good for eye problems? Pot. Sit down and smoke some with us." Uh, thanks, but actually, it's only good for GLAUCOMA and I've got an ulcer, so no thanks. Let's be clear: I did not accept their invitation to smoke pot. In fact, I've never smoked pot.
The doctor today gave me some good drugs and told me to come back on Friday. I also had a glass of wine this evening because I'm completely certain that although he didn't prescribe it, he meant to. I'm feeling better and fortunately, all of my clients were very understanding and have been rescheduled.