Monday, March 9, 2009

What You See is What You Get


Today I watched my wife’s eye get sucked out of her head.















Well, not the entire eye, just the lens, but it was still really cool. She went in for cataract surgery this morning. They called me back into a room to talk about the post-
op care, and there was a large TV screen with her eyeball on it. That’s all it was, her eyeball, opened wide. The surgery was being broadcast live.

There was a small implement that looked like the tip of a calligraphy pen poking into the bottom center of her eye, where there was a 3mm incision in the cornea.

“…and after she wakes up, which will probably be around 2:30pm, she can take the bandage off if when she can blink,” the nurse explained as I stared at the screen. It was hypnotic. This big eyeball staring at me. Kind of like watching Lord of the Rings.

“Do they take the whole lens out?” I asked, although they were quite obviously doing just that. I didn’t need to ask. I could see it right there in front of me. After all, I wasn’t the one going in for surgery. But I was fascinated watching it.

The nurse explained that a cataract is a medical condition where the entire lens becomes dense and cloudy, not just a film covering the surface. The procedure is really a lens extraction, and they put in a new lens, custom made for her eye.

The calligraphy pen broke up the lens, and when it finished, a small vacuum took its place. Small in real life, that is. On screen it was the size of a Dirt Devil. It sucked out all the lens pieces, and then another tool came onscreen to insert the new lens. The lens went in all folded up, and I watched as it slowly unfolded, like a flower blooming in slow motion, the bright orange backdrop of her retina helping to illustrate the thin black edges of the transparent lens like some jellyfish dancing in front of an underwater volcano. Now how cool is that?

She’s back home and doing fine. She napped for a couple hours. I took a vacation day so I could be caregiver, and she’s remarkably self-sufficient when she isn’t sleeping, so this is more like a standard vacation day for me. Just without the beach.

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18 comments:

Lady Glamis said...

Glad she is doing well! I'll take a vacation, even without the beach. :)

Davin Malasarn said...

Yes, glad all is fine! Did she get a synthetic lens or did it belong to someone else? Just curious. I don't know how it works. I once saw a live Lasik operation being performed and that was really impressive, but this sounds even better.

Rick Daley said...

It was synthetic, custom made just for her.

Litgirl01 said...

Ick! Sounds frightening. Glad she pulled through. :-)

Crimogenic said...

I admit it, I cringed when I read the first line.

Glad things went well!

Rick Daley said...

To address the question posed The Visuals by Lady G's on her blog The Innocent Flower...

I had the picture of Sauron's eye in my head. I didn't Google it until I finished writing the post.

But I also had the stunning visual on the TV at the Dr's office as inspiration.

So in this case, there was definitely external visual stimuli to inspire the writing...

Anita said...

I hope she makes a quick recovery!

Justus M. Bowman said...

Thank you for putting the Eye of Sauron up. People think the image on my site is the Eye of Sauron. Not so!

Your story gave me the willies... though I just read that the British think of "willie" as an obscene term for penis. Thanks for ruining everything, WordWeb.

Rick Daley said...

Sauron has a pupil like a cats' eye, not round, that's the first give away for your image. What is that, out of curiosity?

I'm a very visual person, and my eyes are sensitive. I can't stand putting eye drops in, and I don't think I could ever wear contact lenses. Watching the surgery creeped me out, too...but it was all so fascinating at the same time!

The British has a lot of interesting slang.

Lift- Elevator
Lou- Toilet (John)
Lorry- Truck
Flat- Apartment

After years and years of Monty Python, I have become quite familiar with most of them.

Justus M. Bowman said...

I decided to find an "ambitious" image, so I searched Google for "eye," hoping to find some serious eyes. When I saw the flaming eye, I thought it looked serious enough.

Kat Harris said...

Your wife is brave. Eye surgery would be my worst nightmare. This comes from having a mom who worked in the office of an eye surgeon for more than 30 years and came home with horror stories about bottle rockets gone awry.
Great post!

Rick Daley said...

Speaking of bottle rockets gone awry...

There is a viral video of a group of adventurous young men launching a very large bottle rocket. One of the more adventurous young men volunteers an orifice for use as the "bottle." Problem is, the rocket does not launch as expected...

It is not for the faint of heart. But it is damn funny.

Anita said...

On a side note: Thanks for your help with my query!

I wish I could link your query blog at my blog, but I'm supposed to limit my links, because my newspaper is going to adopt my blog any day now...I think I'll have a new address, but I'll warn everyone ahead of time.

Rick Daley said...

Anita - Great news that the newspaper is going to add in your blog, congrats! Don't worry about the link, I understand the circumstances. But do feel free to wander over there and submit your revised query, if you dare!

I had great feedback on mine, and yesterday I posted a second query and some feedback started coming through for that author right away as well.

kimmirich said...

Wow! That is really cool. Happy your wifey is better!

PurpleClover said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
PurpleClover said...

Oh lord can you post a whole list of british definitions?? I follow a few hilarious brit blogs but I must admit I get lost in translation on a couple of the words?? lol.

maybe i should just google: british to american jargon

err something. I totally believe that these women are way more hilarious than I'm giving them credit for...I just don't understand the terms!

Rick Daley said...

PurpleClover,

I've been watching Monty Python since I was eight years old, so British humor and slang comes naturally to me most of the time.