I was lucky it didn’t bite me you-know-where. I waited years to have my diabetes eye exam. I waited and put it off in part because I was so scared. The other reason was that I was dealing with some awful symptoms due to my undiagnosed celiac disease. I didn’t know what was wrong with me and I had so many other weird specialist appointments and even nasal surgery to try to feel better, but nothing seemed to work. I was frustrated with my doctors and with feeling terrible and I just felt depressed. I am feeling better now that I am completely gluten free and am working to get all my health appointments caught up.
My eye doctor appointment was going to be a long one. I have a bunch of eye problems. I have ocular hypertension which means the pressure in my eyes is high. This can lead to glaucoma if you don’t take drops to reduce the pressure in your eyes. It isn’t something to play with and I had run out of my prescription for them.
I am also terribly nearsighted. I have worn glasses since kindergarten. I switched to contact lenses in high school. My prescription is so strong that I have had holes in my retina that required laser procedures to seal them more than once. They told me it is because I am so nearsighted.
Then there is the diabetes. I think all of us are terrified of the words diabetic retinopathy. I find myself practically holding my breath during the lengthy appointment until I hear the all clear. I was really worried this time because in addition to having waited several years for my appointment, I have had some vision issues lately. At the end of the appointment the Ophthalmologist said there was absolutely no sign of diabetic retinopathy. I let out a sigh of relief and nearly cried I was so happy. I have had Type 1 diabetes for 22 years and I am a huge worrier.
She also said I had no new retinal holes. Hallelujah! She mentioned that she could see the scar from a previous laser procedure, but all looked good. Why my vision issues? It may be related to the high pressure so I picked up a new eye drop prescription and will hope for good results. It could be that my contact lens prescription changed slightly. It could be that now that I am past 40, I need some readers in addition to the contact lenses…the joys of getting older!
I’m relieved to have done my appointment. In the past few weeks I’ve done all my lab work, visited the dentist, and now the eye doctor. I’m getting back on track with all the crucial appointments that come with being a person with Type 1 diabetes. It’s hard sometimes, but I know it is important. Putting it off is human, but even if you screw up, it’s important to get back on track. It’s like having a weight lifted off of you. I’m beyond thankful that my results were good. I never want to delay making my health a top priority again.