IamA legally blind 21 y/o male. AMA!
Hi, I'm new to Reddit, I'll do my best to do things right around here. I'm making this because I feel inclined to tell about a significant part of my life, I just need to express myself since I feel as if I have to keep it all inside; what I have is a bit extreme and hard to imagine, it's just something you can't tell people you just met and it brings up many questions that have answers that are hard to understand. Plus, I like being a man of mystery sometimes.
I was diagnosed with open-angle glaucoma(which runs in the family, my mom had it when she was 15) at the age 18 in December of 2012, 6 months after I graduated high school. It's an eye disease that usually affects older people, perhaps I'm just an old soul? The gist of it is the pressure in the eye becomes too high, kind of like a sink filling up with water, and it causes permanent damage and vision loss if left untreated.
After neglecting my doctors advice, and neglecting the eye drops I was given to take, I continued to work as a cook at a well known semi-fast food restaurant cause I was so hung up on the idea of a promotion and not going to college. Besides, I'd grown comfortable. Albeit in a place where I (And the rest of my high school aged workers) were treated horribly. This continued despite pleas from my mother and my doctor to take time off from work to see an ophthalmologist (advanced eye dr). I always ignored it because I was training for that promotion, I'd invested too much time and energy to give up (I was a stubborn dumbass).
By May 2013, I noticed missing vision in the top right hand corner of my left eye and decided I needed to go to the dr. straight away. Turns out I couldn't even read or drive with that eye because the central vision had deteriorated, and I was diagnosed legally blind. That May, I turned 19 and my medicaid expired, so I had to apply for public health insurance etc for treatment at a local hospital. This sucked to say the least, I was under the impression that because I was now legally blind in my left eye and losing major vision, going to the ER would set me up for immediate treatment, I was wrong. It took a long time, my first surgery on the left eye was scheduled for July 31st, and a surgery was also scheduled for my right eye on the 14th of August. These were filtration surgeries called trabeculectomys that reduced my IOP (eye pressure) from a bizarrely high 50s to 6s and 8s. My mom and my (ex)gf of 7 mos were both there for me both times.
I'm also night-blind now, which sucks especially since I liked going to movies by myself and whatever. Me and my gf at the time broke up about a year and 2 months later in September 14'. I've also had literally 9 jobs since. It took me 8 months for my doctor to say that I could go ahead and be physical/exercise. I'm also semi-cross eyed since I can't completely control my eyeballs, which I'm self conscious about. I also now walk looking down because I lost some vision on the bottom left of my right eye (See? hard to understand) (no pun intended) or else I'd kick a kid 3ft and under or trip on something. Anyways it's been a long road of adjusting and living differently. I've had bouts of negative thoughts but still a delusional optimism saves the day most of the time.
Excuse my long post, it just feels good to type all that out and get it off my chest. Feel free to ask any questions, I won't be offended by any, thanks for reading.
My Proof: Picture of how the top part of my eyeball looks 24/7 since that surgery, MIGHT GROSS YOU OUT.http://imgur.com/o4B9a7H