Eye Pain All Jacked Up Today

By: Loolwa Khazzoom, Founder, Dancing with Pain

October 1st, 2009 • Living with Chronic PainPrint Print

I am having a hard day. I’ve got wicked eye pain — stemming from the incident when the doctor dumped the cup of liquid nitrogen onto the examining table, splashing a bit into my eye. While I never fully recovered from it, the pain and discomfort stemming from it is usually mild. Not pleasant, I mean, how much fun is it to have a mild burning sensation in your eyes most of the time, but tolerable.

Today the eye pain is all jacked up. My whole head, in fact, is hurting, in response to the eye pain. Plus while the feeling is down a bit now, I’ve had the sensation, much of today, that there is something in my eye. Something a little bit scratchy. Ugh.

Meanwhile I was planning on going to a social event tonight for media professionals. Because I live in isolation, and I am really making an effort to get out and network and make friends. And, you know, find the love of my life. But I don’t know that I can brave the freeway tonight. As it is, on a normal night, everyone drives like homicidal maniacs, scaring the bejesus out of me. To field that plus a mofo headache plus the shots of nerve pain I get from oncoming headlights (also thanks to the lovely wart-removing doctor incident)…ugh. Too much. Too much.

And so goes my life. To take care of myself physically, I end up sacrificing emotionally. When is it in my interest to push through the pain? Where is it unsafe to do so? Being that this whole world of pain was triggered by a hit & run, head-on car collision, I feel like I don’t want to get in my car unless I’m in top-top shape.

I should probably dance. I mean, of course, duh, right? But it’s fucking hot in my living room (no air conditioning), and I just rilly rilly want to be out there socializing. And I’m feeling REALLY FUCKING PISSED at this wretched doctor and all the dumbness that goes along with it – ie, despite the fact that the incident left me with…

  1. debilitating headaches for weeks straight and on-and-off since
  2. shots of nerve pain from oncoming headlights, camera flashes, sunlight reflection, and, weirdly enough, even looking at some people (must be an energy thing)
  3. sudden, premature onset of dry eyes
  4. inability to wear contacts, initiating a chain reaction of issues in the beauty and romance department
  5. constant mild burning sensation in my eyes

and despite the fact that I…

  1. spent thousands of dollars on body work and eye drops, to minimize the pain
  2. had to dedicate many hours of my time going to eye doctors and other health care practitioners to deal with the injury
  3. gained 25 pounds following the incident, as a result of depression (after having worked my ass off to lose 12 pounds over a five-month period before)
  4. lost the accumulated total of months worth of work and therefore income
  5. found it very difficult to sleep for many nights over the past two years, because of the pain
  6. had to spend an accumulated total of tens of hours lying in bed with hot compresses or cold packs on my eye

AND despite the fact that each of those issues triggered by the incident left me with a chain reaction of other issues, I have been told that..

  1. it was impossible for the liquid nitrogen to have caused me any harm
  2. nothing is wrong with my eyes (because today’s technology is not sensitive enough to detect up the issue, and if the machines don’t see anything, then apparently nothing exists and I’m just stirring up trouble because I’m bored)

It just brings up the crappy cycle that I’ve been dealing with for over a decade. And it makes me feel powerless and angry. And it makes me feel that my precious life is just wasting away and nobody cares. That is, nobody in a position to help me. Because lord knows my health insurance is not worth shit. They will pay for surgery without knowing what the hell they are operating on, but they will not pay for a series of bodywork sessions that actually do something to help me. All to the tune of almost $700 a month.

Well. Lookie here. Now that I’ve gotten all that out of my system, I feel much better. (Could be that the medicated eye drops finally kicked in. But I digress.) I think I’m going to walk to my local café, juice up on caffeine, get in the car, and go to that event tonight.

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