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Been through a lot worse

Posted Dec 14 2008 8:37pm

This morning, I had my eyes dilated during an eye exam. I hate that. So much so that last year, I refused to let my very nice doctor place those evil drops in my nearly-blind eyes. You need them, she told me, and I told her I’d come back in a few months. I never did. One year later, today, I complied. I permitted the dilation, and I’ve been suffering all day.

Those drops, given after the also-hated glaucoma drops that numb my eyelids, make my vision blurry and prevent me from seeing anything up close. They make light much brighter than it should be, and they give me a killer headache. Have I used the word hate yet?

“Gosh, your pupils are so dilated,” my doctor told me as I was paying for this torture. “I know, I hate it,” I told her. Her wise response: “You’ve been through a lot worse.”

She’s right. I have been through a lot worse. A growing tumor or yucky eye drops? I’ll take the eye drops. Chemotherapy or blurry vision? Blurry is better. Radiation or a day-long headache? OK, so the headache isn’t so bad.

Geez, I’m such a whiner. The funny thing is, I really only whine about the little things, like dilated eyes. Somehow, I rise to the occasion for the big stuff. Cancer scared me. But I didn’t whine about it. Same with childbirth. Big, painful stuff. No whining at all. What’s wrong with me? Nothing, actually. My eyes checked out just fine. And I don’t have cancer anymore. I have absolutely nothing to whine about. Well, until next year’s eye exam.

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