Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Back to the Story--My Boyfriend's Blurry Birthday

My BF's 44th birthday - Tuesday, September 5, 2007. I had big plans for Ken's birthday. I dropped the kids off at school, stopped for coffee, and drove to work with his present in the car, I planned to stop on the way home, buy a mushy card, and I think we were supposed to get together for a meal before the kids came home..

I didn't plan to tell anyone at work about the MS, because it was a "suspected diagnosis" and I was pretty sure I would have to then "recant" when they discovered I was fine. Plus, I felt like my boss should be the first to know. She had just lost her mother to breast cancer and was sitting Shiva with her family. Plus, I looked fine. I felt like crap but I looked fine soo I thought no one would need to know. I was pretty sure I wasn't going to suddenly start falling down or slurring my words or anything.

That was before I started to go completely blind.

I was sitting in my office, with my right eye completely blind when I started to watch the words on my computer screen disappear in pieces. I thought I was going blind. I WAS going blind.

I called Ken and then Christina (who immediately left Maine to come and get me) and then Liz (who offered to drive up from Virginia and I said yes) and then Kenny Chang (who told me to come into the ER for IV steroids) and then Christina again who was on the road and then Ken again and then Gina and then anyone else I could think of. I ran into the VP of Promotion's office to tell her, through sobs, and apologies for crying and oversharing, that I had MS and I was starting to go completely blind and that I was only telling her because Jessie was out and that I wasn't going to be able to pay my respects at Shiva and that I needed to leave because I was afraid I was going to start slurring my words or falling down or that I would go completely blind and not be able to find my way downstairs. She listened and told me to sit down and didn't tell me until the following week that she was flipping out, too, because her "worst possible scenerio" was going blind.

I took the elevator down just one floor because I was afraid I would lose my eyesight completely on the stairs. I made it to Panera around the corner in my office park and sat at an outside table to wait for Christina. I remember it was a beautiful day. I figured that if I did go totally blind and couldn't see Christina when she pulled up, she would be able to see me and come and get me. I think I told her what I was wearing just in case. Then, I got tired of sitting there waiting to go totally blind so I decided to go into Panera and get lunch since it was almost noon. I couldn't read the menu except for the large titles so I asked the man ahead of me in line to read the ingredients to one of the salads. He acted annoyed but told me what was in the Figi chicken salad or whatever it was. I decided not to push my luck and ask for a recitation of the soups. Instead I ordered a couple things that Christina and I ate and she said tasted good but I don't remember. I carried the food outside and Christina was there. She took the bag and walked me to the car. I wasn't blind yet, but more importantly, I wasn't alone.


I only have random, disconnected memories of that blurry boyfriend birthday:

- Mass Eye and Ear Emergency Room
- IV infusion -- bubble bruise from bad stick
- Laying on a gurney near other people including a lovely woman in a wheelchair. I introduced myself and told her I had MS. She told me she had Graves disease or something like that. She was glowing with positivity. We chatted during my infusion while she waited for whatever care she needed. She told me she had had PIC lines which were way worse than IVs. She was married, she was peaceful.
- Christina bought me two bags of black licorice and Women's Health and O Magazine then she ruined it by apologizing for buying me crap to eat instead of something healthy.
- Way, way later, I left with a whole bunch of prescriptions and orders to come back the next day.
- Christina drove me to my house, where we met Ken and then the kids came home and then I gave Ken his gift with no card and then Christina drove Ken back to my office in Watertown to pick up my van and drive it back to Weymouth and then pick up his car and go home. I really wanted my car at home even though I couldn't drive it. I'm not sure why.
- Liz, who got in her car in Alexandria, Virginia when I called to say I was gong blind, showed up sometime that night. She put Kate and Zack to bed on my new sleeper sofa and stayed up listening to me until I could fall asleep. I remember being afraid I would be totally blind when I woke up. I felt safe that Liz was there if it happened so she could help me get the kids ready for school.

1 comment:

  1. What a scary day. We are sooo blessed to have people around us who do amazing things to show up and help us when we need them. G*D BLESS LIZ!!!