Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Master Bathroom today.....

Oh...hello interwebs. Long time no see. S'up?

Me?  Oh nothing. Same ole, same ole.

Oh wait, there was that thing on Saturday, where I inadvertantly seared my eyeballs with a caustic substance known to cause permanent blindness.

Good Lord...wouldn't you think the Antagonist family has met their quota of crises this year? would be wrong.

Saturday, after waking early to walk at the park with a friend, and anticipating an afternoon of baseball followed by a yummy dinner off the grill and some good red wine, for which I had been banking points all week....

I ended up in the Emergency room with severe chemical burns to my right eye.

It was a stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid accident.

Aren't they all? In fact, I prefer to call them "stupidents".

Baseball got rained out, so I decided to put the time to good use and do some of the much needed cleaning around my house while husband bought groceries for our meticulously planned, point conscious but hopefully still really delicous and soul satisfying dinner.

I was reaching for a jug of Ammonia...

(okay, here's why I keep Ammonia in the house. Did you know that many household cleaners are simply ammonia and water? So then they charge you like four bucks for one bottle. But, you can get a bottle of ammonia for .99 and mix it with water yourself. You can make like....sixteen batches of household cleaner with one bottle of ammonia!! Until Saturday, I thought myself  very clever indeed for sniffing out and then circumventing THAT little ruse.)

....which I keep on the top shelf of my bathroom closet; a habit left over from the days of having small, inquisitive children.

Alas...the top was not screwed on tightly.

I grabbed the bottle around the middle instead of by the handle, as the handle was turned away from me. Because the shelf was above my head, I had to tilt the bottle downward to get ahold of it. At that moment, it slipped just a bit and when I tightened my grasp to avoid dropping it, the liquid shot out of the top, directly into my face and eyes.

I spent the next ten minutes frantically flushing my eyes with water while my eldest son called my husband to tell him he needed to come home RIGHT NOW.

My eyesight was worsening by the moment, and I knew it was bad. I could scarcely see out of my right eye at all. I could see a white haze with very indistinct areas of light and dark. That was all.

Now, usually, I'm pretty calm in the face of a crisis. But blindness has always been one of my greatest fears; perhaps because I have had such bad vision my entire life. Honestly, I would rather lose a limb than lose my eyesight. I would rather be deaf, dumb....ANYTHING....than be blind. Which, of course, is why letting someone put me under a laser and slice through my corneas was such an incredible leap of faith for me.

And besides that? It hurt like a motherfucker. (I'm sorry...really, I am. I try to keep the profanity here to a minimum, but there's just no other way to describe the sensation of your cornea being slowly seared away)

So, in a nutshell, when my husband arrive home, I completely lost my cool. As soon as I realized he was standing in the bathroom doorway, I broke down into hysterical sobs and threw myself into his arms. He did his best to calm me, but once that damn breaks....

He gave up trying to calm me down and did his best to simply get me moving. He pulled me out of the bedroom by the wrist, like an adult leading a small child. I was still zipping up my pants and pulling my shirt over my head as he coaxed me down the stairs and out the front door.

I sobbed all the way to the urgent care clinic.

"We spent all the money on my eyes and now they're ROOOOOOOOOOOOOIIIIIIINNNNED."

I was scared to death and sick over the waste and so very, very angry.  I had blinded myself. What a moron. I would have to spend the rest of my life with my hair in a bun telling my story to school children and lobbying for the return of prominently placed Mr. Yuck stickers on every bottle of household Ammonia.

When we arrived at urgent care, the waiting room was absolutely jam packed.

"Oh fuh-fuh-fuhhhhck! I'm going to be waiting fuh-fuh-fovever!!!" I sobbed.

I could feel the hysteria rising again. But it's amazing how quickly hysterical weeping and blazing red sclera will get you seen. No really, I think what did it was the fact that my eyes had gone two distinctly different shades of green. One remained a sedate, but, I think, rather pretty green, while the other had turned a sort of a sickly, limey, nuclear accident green. That's really quite alarming, in case you can't imagine it.

Whatever the case, I was whisked back to an exam room before the "-onia" had left husband's mouth. He said, "She spilled Amm...." and BAM! I was flat on my back with a tube stuck in my eye.

Yes, because when you have a chemical burn to your eyeball, what could be more comfortable than placing a rubber disk the size of a fucking dinner plate upon it?

It's called a Morgan lense and it looks like this:'s every bit as comfortable as it looks.

There is an actual picture of me with the Morgan lense in place, but I will not share it here. Mostly, because it's spectacularly unflattering, but also because it's kind of gruesome. At least, judging from my mother's reaction, it was.

They irrigated my eye with a litre of saline. It was a bizarre feeling. My eyeball was numb, thanks to some truly, truly miraculous stuff they dripped into it (I may or may not have offered an intern at the ER sexual favors in return for a bottle). I screamed just a little when the drops made contact but it only took a moment to quote Roger become comfortably numb. And then I couldn't feel the pain, but I could feel the sensation of cold, and the feeling of pressure against my eyeball as the liquid flowed from the Morgan lense.

After that, they wiped a strip of litmus paper across my raw, abraded eyeball and decided the ph. was still not what it should be. Then they looked at my cornea under a fluoroscope. The doctor, the nurse and husband all gazed down upon me with brows furrowed in concern, but also with unmistakable interest. I sort of felt like a caterpillar in a jelly jar as the doctor pointed out the large starburst shaped occlusion directly over my pupil. The question was, how deep did it go?

The doctor decided I needed to go to the actual ER where they would have eye people on hand.

I had calmed somewhat once the pain was brought down to a dull ache, but that caused me to freak out all over again. She wouldn't have been sending me to the ER if it was good news, now would she? .

Again, we were given expedited service and I soon found myself  on a hard gurney in a curtained off little stall. On the other side of the partition, a small child coughed a horrible, tearing cough while his mother crooned to him in Spanish. By that time, my drops had worn off and I was once again in agony.

People, I have given birth. Twice. The second time, I gave birth to a baby so big it caused all my friends to unconsciously cross their legs whenever his birthweight was mentioned. And that didn't even come close to hurting as much as my eyeball hurt.

Later, I got some really good drugs; injected so they would work fast. The downside of that? Puking my guts out for three hours. Some of you may recall that I have something of an emetiphobia. I absolutely loathe throwing up. And I especially loathe doing so in front of other people. I will employ any and all means necessary to avoid doing so, usually with success.

But I was helpless. I puked in front of husband. I puked in front of the doctor. I puked in front of the nurse. I puked in front of the guy mopping the floor in front of the women's lavatory. I puked in front of the lady next to me who, owing to the ventilator, was mostly oblivous, but it was humiliating nonetheless. I puked in front of the homeless guy panhandling in the ambulance bay while I waited for husband to get the van. And, I puked in front of both of my children, who, heretofore, had never seen such a horrifying spectacle. Not only was I hurking uncontrollably, but I was high as a kite, incoherent, scarlet-eyed, dishevelled and soaking wet from the repeated irrigations.

I've had finer moments.

The doctor told me that eyes are the most resilient organ in the body and that these kinds of injuries usually heal quickly and completely (while fully acknowledging that they are unimaginably painful.) but I was dubious.

How could something that HURT so badly and so thoroughly ravaged my vision possibly heal with no lasting damage? I mean....I spilled a chemical in my eyes! (not an acid, I'm told, but a base, which is still pretty bad) And here I am three days later, none the worse for the wear.

Un. Believable.


  • At 9:24 PM, Blogger SUEB0B said…

    Well, to be all copy editor about it, ammonia is a rather strong base, not an acid. But STILL. In your EYE! I am so sorry. I put earwax remover in my eye earlier this year - that was fun. Fun like breaking a toe is fun. So I feel for you.

  • At 9:50 PM, Blogger slouchy said…

    Holy shit.


    That is all.


    OK, I'm done now.

  • At 10:21 PM, Anonymous feefifoto said…

    Ow! Ow! OW!!

    I feel for you. I once put contact cleaner on a lens instead of wetting solution. Do you know how hard it is to pry your eye open to yank out a burning contact lens? It's really hard! I had to beg my then four-year-old son to spray saline in my eye as I lay on the bathroom floor and screamed. Then I called my mother to pick up my son so I could lie in a darkened room the rest of the day. It wasn't until the end of that day that my eye started to feel as if it were being gouged out by just a spoon instead of a heated fork, which was how it had felt up until then.

    I feel for you. Hope you're all better.

  • At 10:41 PM, Anonymous Bevin said…

    Oh. My. Goodness.

    I'm glad you are okay! That sounds utterly terrifying.

  • At 2:17 AM, Blogger Kathryn in NZ said…

    When you do something Ms BA, you really do it.
    So so glad it's all ok now.

  • At 9:08 AM, Blogger the only daughter said…

    Cripes, my eye hurt just reading that. Glad to read yours is better.


  • At 12:24 PM, Blogger Kim said…

    Wow! When you decide to have a stupident, you really go all out don'tcha?

    Glad you are better now.

  • At 1:03 PM, Blogger Mac and Cheese said…

    No worse for wear??? Holy shit! Glad you're ok...

  • At 5:17 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I am so sorry that happened to you. But, I must admit, reading it made me feel better about my petty little problems because it made me laugh OUT LOUD (and shed just one tear).


    Mary in Texas

  • At 8:15 AM, Blogger Trenches of Mommyhood said…

    My eyes completely watered in sympathy reading this!

    I'm sticking to the $4.00 cleaners now.

  • At 9:19 AM, Anonymous gurukarm (@karma_musings) said…

    ow ow ow indeed. And? I *totally* get the fear of blindness. I too have had that one (still have it) from very young. I was a huge fan of Helen Keller biographies, but in that "can't-turn-your-head-away-from-the-car-wreck" sort of horrible fascination/imagination with what that would be like, way.

    Have worn glasses since age 9, can't use contacts (for which I think I'm glad, after reading @feefifoto's comment!), and have a back-of-the-brain percolating fear that it's all going to get worse and never better, vision-wise. I don't know what I'd do... I am WAY impressed you've had lasik. The very thought makes me cringe.

  • At 10:52 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Oh my gosh, how terrible! Your description of the entire episode has made me rethink anything that I currently have stored on the top shelf in my laundry room. I'm SO glad things turned out ok. What a life altering scare. ~Kellie

  • At 2:53 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Oh, how very scary! I wish you a fast and full recovery.

    I often hurt myself while cleaning so I try not to do it very often. ;)

  • At 8:14 PM, Blogger Grabielle said…

    Sorry about your incident. Glad to know it turned out ok afterall. As always, I love your account of the event.

    Note to self : must strengthen Kegels!!!

  • At 3:09 AM, Blogger Jammie J. said…

    I am shaking at your accounting... I share your fear of blindness.

    All I can say is, thank goodness this year is almost over. I think you've had enough...

  • At 11:35 AM, Blogger Amy Y said…

    Ouch!! I'm glad your eyes are Ok! Poor Mama :(

  • At 1:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I had to have a Morgan lens put in once after an incident involving a kitten's interest in my eyelashes. THey didn't have the right size for me so i spent the whole time in an utter hell because i couldn't scratch my eye BUT OH HOW IT ITCHED. It didn't hurt but because i was squirming and moaning with this tube in my eyeball my family tells me everyone who walked by looked like they wanted to puke.

    I didn't have much pain though, so, condolences.

  • At 9:21 PM, Blogger jess said…

    Oh geez. How utterly horrible. I'm sorry you had to go through that. Glad your eyes are ok though.

  • At 7:06 PM, Blogger Une femme libre said…

    What a nightmare!I am happy you are ok. You write so well that I was suffering with you.

  • At 1:31 PM, Anonymous Cenay Nailor said…

    OMG, I really thought I was the type of person that could read about someone's terrible accident and be empathic and sensitive (which I am), but not the type of person to laugh!

    I have to admit, your funny style, your sharp wit and surprising insights had me chuckling to myself.

    Please please forgive the laughter (unless that was your intention all along), and know that I am glad you are okay.


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