Four Years (or 1, 461 days) Ago

Exactly four years ago I learned that my left optic nerve was inflamed, and that I would need steroids to try to fix things.

Since then I've had innumerable blood tests, two three-day courses of steroids, gone on oral steroids and immunosuppresants, taken other medications to protect me while on those drugs, had three MRIs, one CAT and one PET scan, and visited three different doctors (an ophthalmologist, a neuro ophthalmologist and a retinal specialist) at a rate of about one a month.  And as a pleasant side effect, I've had three ultrasounds and visits to two other doctors because my eye doctors "just want to be sure" things are ok.  Sigh.

Luckily, things have stabilized and there's hope that maybe all this will taper off -- despite my eye not completely ever getting back to 100%, I can live with what I have now.

Then about a month ago I learned that an art teacher I know in SmallCity has been experiencing the same symptoms.  Thus far it's just oral steroids and some improvement, and I'm praying that this will be all she needs.  If she does relapse (as I did) well... her health care is nowhere near as comprehensive as mine is, not to mention that SmallCity isn't known for being a hotbed of medical excellence.

Looking back, those 1,461 days haven't been all bad.  I've gone to Dublin and Amsterdam and Montreal, and seen some great performances, and generally manage to get through my life with only fatigue and some minor inconveniences (like the timing of my "nighttime" pills, or muscle weakness).  I can't imagine being at the start of this, teaching art for a living and without the best hospitals/doctors and full health coverage.

In other words, don't feel bad for me, but please keep her in your hearts.

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