Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Eye Troubles

My youngest daughter, Camie, went to the optometrist last Thursday, just for a routine, run-of-the-mill eye exam. The optometrist saw something in her eyes that concerned her, so she called for a consult with an opthamalogist. The second doctor looked, and decided to have her to come back yesterday so he could dilate her eyes and get a better look at her optic nerve. Said it looked swollen. Hmmm.

So we went back yesterday and they put the funky drops in her eyes to dilate her pupils. She was sitting in the chair having all kinds of fun waiting for her eyes to completely dilate. She couldn't focus on anything close-up, and her eyes would wander and she'd see double. She looked terribly bizarre with those great big, abnormally large pupils staring at me.

The doc comes in, gets his gizmo, and looks inside Camie's eyes. He sits back and says, yeah, the optic nerves in the back of her eye still look swollen.

I'm thinking, OK... so... do you have some medicine or something for her? That's when the doctor dropped a tactical nuke on me. And Camie.

He says, we need to schedule her for a CT scan right away......(did he just say CT scan? On my baby?).... to see what's causing the pressure on the nerves. It could be a tumor.....(He did NOT just say tumor. Oh, hell no he didn't). If it's not, it's usually a condition called "pseudotumor" which is a raising of the spinal fluid pressure (the optic nerve is actually coated and protected by the exact same fluid system that runs up and down the spine, which was news to me). We'd need to draw some spinal fluid to find out why the pressure is high (spinal tap? wha???).

Camie sat dumbfounded, and I asked the doctor a few questions. Wasn't really all that much to ask about. CT scan will confirm something wrong in Camie's head or not. If there is something wrong, we'll attack it and go from there. If not, then we go on to the next possible problem, and so on and so forth.

My kids have all been incredibly healthy, and in that sense we've been super-fortunate. I'm still certain, down to the bottom of my soul, Camie is going to be just fine. But having to think, even for a second, about a real possiblility of something bad happening to my baby like this....

It's in comprehensible to me what families do who experience sudden trauma, and actually lose loved ones.

I've seen my dad have a heart attack and lose his sight. That's about the worse thing I've been through. But dad's sight loss was a gradual thing which occurred over 40 years. I was prepped for the day he'd be blind all my life. The death of grandparents, although sad, was also an expected, inevitable thing; not "traumatic" in my book. Sad, but the normal way of things.

I just pray that Camie will be OK. She's dealing with it pretty well. After we saw the doctor, we went over to her mom's to tell her, too. Mom was understandably emotional, but handled it pretty well. She was concerned that Camie feel comfortable to talk about it, and express herself if she felt like it.

After talking to mom we drove up to Olivehurst and had dinner with Aisha and Jeremy in their new house. They've done a nice job painting it, and it's a really cute place. Jeremy can cook! Made some killer chicken and rice. Camie seemed to be herself for a while, with the distraction, which was good. Camie's just such a trooper.

We drove home, and talked about possibilities and things that happen in life. We talked about the CT scan, and what it would be like. At first, we were thinking MRI scan, which is the long tube they put you in, and that freaked Camie out! But CT is more like a donut they stick your head in, not your whole body. That made her a little more comfortable. She even made a few jokes about scrambling her brains. She's just such a trooper.

Again, I KNOW in my heart she's going to be ok. It's hard to explain how, but it's a God thing for me. The same way I KNEW, without a doubt, my daughter Lindsey would one day accept Christ, is the same way I KNOW Camie will be ok. It's a peace about it that doesn't come from me.

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