Saturday, August 10, 2013

A Summer of Herpes

I know this sounds like a low-budget teen film but this has been my summer of Herpes Simplex keratitis, or in other words, Herpes of the ole eye-ball.  When it was told to my daughter, who works at Verizon and deals with apple products and apps, that I have eye-herpes, she wanted to know what kind of an app that was.  

So basically this is a cold sore virus in the eye.  Why this virus thought it would be a good idea to attack my eye, I'll never know, but I'm TIRED of it!  I"m "seeing" a corneal surgeon who has me putting drops in my eye 6 times a day and taking anti-viral pills. 

 I made this small so you don't have to look at it if you don't want. :)

Just in case you're thinking that a good herpes virus in the eye would be fun, I'll tell you what happens. This is basically a medical explanation that you will find on WebMD but much better. :)

It starts with an irritation of the eye that will turn your eye red, cause burning and light sensitivity.  It will be misdiagnosed as an irritated cornea or a scratched cornea. (Who is expecting herpes, for heavens sake?) Antibiotic drops will be prescribed and when you go back to the eye doctor, your eye is flaming red and your sight is blurry.  The eye doc will say, "Whoa!  Let's get you off these drops and try something else for a few days!"  In a few days, you'll go back to the office and it's the same...only worse.  By now, he realizes it could be herpes and he calls the corneal surgeon.  Then, because he's such a nice guy, and your vision has become very cloudy in that eye and it's hard to keep the eye open, he actually drives you to the corneal surgeon. (OK, this may not happen to you, but your eye doctor probably isn't as nice as mine and mine had met me in his office on his day off)  
Now, according to the websites about this condition, once you're on the regime of drops and pills, it will take 2 to 3 weeks for it to turn around and get better.  NOT!  I have been dealing with this since the end of June. A few weeks ago, it started to get better.  My eye wasn't as red, it was still a bit sensitive to light but my vision was starting to return.  Last week the virus returned with a vengeance!  
At this time, my cornea is swollen.  A normal cornea thickness is 540 nm.  Mine is 840. Because the herpes has attacked the cornea directly in the center, my vision is frosty.  The best way to explain it is to look in a mirror after having a hot shower and the mirror is steamy.  You can barely see an image in the mirror.  This is how I "see" out of the eye.  Now, imagine how it feels to have shampoo in your eye.  It burns, turns your eye red, and is hard to open. Yep, that's how I feel now. Oh yes, one more thing.  I can taste the eye drops after putting them in my eye.  They are yuk!  
So, think twice about getting this virus!  It stinks!

Now, the best way to deal with adversity of any kind, is to do service for others who have it worse that you.  This summer has not been fun.  The plans I had to go to Rexburg to see family or  have grand kids spend the night, or drive to go anywhere, have all been shot to heck.  I will admit, I have had a few pity parties.  However, I have a good friend who is suffering with cancer.  She is bed-ridden and is blind in her right eye because of a tumor.  When I go to her house, I realize that my problem is tiny compared to hers.  I can at least get out of bed and go about my semi-normal routine.

Lest you think I'm a cry baby who doesn't appreciate what I have, here are just a few things of which I am thankful:
My left eye!  It is awesome!!  No problem there.
I can still run (I have to be careful while crossing the street because my vision is gone on the right side, but running seems to make it feel better, as long as I run before the sun comes up)
My family (They have driven me places I need to go and they are generally good people)
My faith (I truly believe I will be healed, I'm just a bit impatient)
The rest of my body is OK 
Friends I have a friend who gave me this insulated lunch bag for my birthday. 
I'm excited to take it back to school and have it sitting in the faculty fridge. 

I could go on and on but these are just a few.

 I'm also thankful for this little Tyke!

Until this heals, I am your "One-Eyed Friend", signing off.


Saimi said...

Connie, Connie, Connie you poor girl! Ouch that eye is flaming red. I do love the lunch bag, and better yet, I love your dancing feller! Too, too, cute!!

I sure hope your eye get's better - Hey, you could aways blame on pink eye, then perhaps you wouldn't have to start back to school just yet!

There is that! HA!!

Take care

Heffalump said...

That looks so miserable! I hope improvement continues and that you feel 100% soon!

Nancy Face said...

Oh, good grief! What an awful ordeal!
I am so sorry for what you've been through, and hope that improvement and healing will come soon! Hang in there, sweet friend!

Natalie A said...

Oh no Connie. Your poor eye! It looks miserable. I am sorry you have this ordeal to go through. Here's praying for a quick healing. Love you and wish I was there to give you some help.

Lesa said...

Makes me sad to see and hear about your eye. Here is to hoping that you are healed and seeing just fine when school starts. :)

Valerie said...

That sure looks and sounds awful! I hope it heals quickly now. But how fun that you have a friend with a great sense of humor and that you do too. That lunch bag is so cute and perfect.

Welcome to the Garden of Egan said...

"EYE" am so SORRY!!!!!!

Yikes that looks so miserable. Too bad you weren't getting herpes like all the other "normal" people. ....uh, not really.

I'm praying for you. Hurry up and get better.
Prayers for your friend, your perspective has to be changed forever.

Yvonne said...

Oh, Connie, I am so very sorry. You hang in there.

As always, YOU ARE AMAZING. You have such a positive attitude.


Valerie said...

Oh man, that looks awful~ and I'm sure it feels awful too! Hope it clears up soon!!! But the lunch bag is funny, so there's always that! ;)

Vicki Valenta said...

I had Shingles all around my right eye a few years ago. The doctor told me I was fortunate that it did not actually get in my eye. Now that I've seen yours, I must agree with him. What I had was very painful, but yours looks works. I hope it gets better soon.

Sue said...

This sounds miserable, and I am so sorry. I am also praying for you!


Grandma Honey said...

I read this with horror while in Oregon. You poor thing. I've never heard of herpes in the eye so how were you suppose to even guess that!

The older I get the more strange things that happen to my body. This past year I've had 3 unusual diagnosis so I can relate to your post.

I've been praying for you.

Kimmie said...

This just absolutely breaks my heart to read this! I am SO sorry that my sweet friend has had to deal with such an awful thing. (the photo of your eye just looks SO painful).

You are my hero and inspiration for being one of the most positive people I know! It sounds like you have been surrounded by so much love and family to help you out during this miserable and trying time!

Good Luck with the first little bit of school starting. You're in my thoughts my sweet and wonderful friend!

Betty said...

I had herpes on my face earlier this year (shingles) and it was so much fun! I can't believe you aren't loving having it in your eye!


When you posted that red eye picture on Instagram, I had no idea what was going on. I'm so sorry that this stupid virus brought an overly large cloudy suitcase and decided to overstay its welcome! Call the attorney, have it evicted and FEEL BETTER SOON!!

gigi said...

This is so scary. I pray that by now they have found you some help. Prayers for you Connie. ((hugs))

Kimmie said...

My sweet friend Connie...
You're wonderful outlook on life, despite adversity is going to be a part of my talk that I have to give in church this Sunday. (I hope that's okay). Your positive attitude, your reaching out to help others and your way of focusing on ALL the good in life, remind me so much of Helen Keller. I just hope you know what a ray of sunshine you are in my life and you are truly at the top of being one of the most influential women in my life! I love you my sweet friend! Have a great weekend! Love Kimmie