First I’m on the end of my contact lenses, need to order some—went to Fencon on just about the last of my lenses, didn’t take a spare—now, understand, I can see far off just fine without glasses or contacts. I CAN drive without glasses or contacts. I cannot, however, accurately recognize people who walk up to me, or read a name badge. So losing the lenses would be a pita. But—I didn’t want to use my last lenses until I had time to order a replacement.
So—on the way out, a 2 night and 3 day drive, we hit the smoke most of the way. My eyes start burning. I flood them every chance I get. At the con, the right eye is dryer than the left, or not so comfy. I go on flooding it. It’s Texas: I’m allergic to everything in the American southwest.
Three days with my brother, and still the irritation in the right eye. I figure it’ll get better once we go north. We hit the road, and have a good drive—up to Billings, where we run into the smoke again. Jane’s sick and allergified, and too tired, and I’m wired for sound. I pretty well drove home the last day, through the smoke. We get to bed, we wake up, the eye is still giving me fits, but I delay one day trying to deal with the problem—these are, should you wonder, extended-wear, so a week is good, two weeks is really pushing it.
And that’s the day I come down sick, really sick, and coughing, and one very bad, epic bad, cough causes that eye to go really, really red. I know it’s got to come off, but it’s sore, I can’t see, I’m coughing and wheezing, and I can’t get the damn lens off. It’s on for the duration of the ghastly crud.
Bad me. When I can get the thing off, it requires showering it off, and by now the eye is really offended, sore, Lord! really sore, and I figure eyedrops and sleep will solve it.
Not. Ok. We leave the lenses off a couple of days.
It gets worse. This is the point at which I know I’ve got to go in and get it seen to, but the doc isn’t in on Sunday. Monday—I go over to Walmart (the best doctors in the area) and ask if they can take a look.
A 61 dollar prescription later, of which Medicare pays 1 munificent dollar, I have the med, and head for the car while Jane pays out. Nearly got hit by a speeder and I’m in too much pain to care, after all the testing and an hour trying to get that prescription filled (new customer there, for the pharmacy). The med, finally, brings a little relief.
By evening, the redness is gone. This morning, it’s doing really well. So it’ll be the 18th before I can wear my contacts again, but that’s all ok—the pain has finally stopped. And I’ve been living with that a while.
I know, I know, stu-pid. I should have pulled those contacts back when. I think I had that little bacterial infection from the irritation we were getting here from the smoke, even before we left on the trip: a contact can act like a Bandaid, and keep the eye protected; but after a certain point, it was a pretty dirty bandage, and it was stuck, which took a real painful effort to get off.
So, so glad for the doc. It’s a lot easier to work when tears aren’t streaming down your face.