I could not believe I was having the surgery, until I was having the surgery. It was at that moment just before I walked into the operating room with my eye frozen, a THIS IS REALLY HAPPENING moment.
Even though I’d been told years before that a cornea transplant was the only treatment option for my Fuchs’ Dystrophy, I did not believe it. It would not happen to me, and I put it out of my mind. Was this a way to cope? Was it denial? I could not think about this surgery or all panic would break out inside of me.
The way they prepare you for a cornea transplant is pretty much the same way they prepare anyone who’s going to have cataract surgery. In the eye clinic they brought us in one-by-one, sat us in the big recliners, and prepared to give us medicine to relax and calm, and drops to clean and freeze our eyes. When I was brought into this room, I was sat down in the biggest recliner at the head of the two rows of recliners on either side and was told that I was the “Queen” that day. The only difference that I noted, was that I was prepared to receive intravenous sedation, and instead of getting drops to dilate my pupils, I was given drops to restrict them. When the surgeon and my cornea were ready, I was walked into the operating room and lay down on the operating table. The sedation was mild with the intention that I not fall asleep. I was to be able to say “stop” because I had to cough or sneeze. To my knowledge I was awake for the whole procedure and I looked up at ceiling watching the dancing light show before my eyes. Swirling, bright, sparkling jewels. At one point I felt a tremor go through me. The surgeon stopped and said something along the lines of “Don’t do that.” But I had to say I had no idea what had happened there. Possibly I fell asleep and jerked awake. Another thing they really don’t want you to do. Once the surgery was finished, I was wheeled out to lay in recovery for an hour. I’m pretty sure I slept then. When it was assessed that I could go home, my driver came, they wheeled me to the car, and I lay down in the seat as far back as it could go, keeping my head back and my chin pointed up when transferring.
In just thirty-five minutes, the transplant surgery was done.
Welcome to my vision journal.