I’ve been getting some decent headaches in the evenings lately. They were so regular last month that when I was 2 days “late”, I actually took a pregnancy test. Today, I realized where the headaches are stemming from.
My life began during an afair, after which my biological father beat my mother, trying to kill me. I suspect that my mother drank and possibly did drugs while pregnant with me. Only a short time into my life as an infant, she left me with a babysitter so she could go out partying. After a few days at the sitter with no returning mother, I was put into foster care. My mother lost custody of me in her court case when she couldn’t stay clean or provide a safe home for me. I was placed up for adoption, where my name was unofficially changed from Rhonda to Lisa. Before the adoption was complete, the couple was investigated, as I was in and out of the hospital with numerous injuries: hit my head on the coffee table, fell down the stairs…things like that. The couple lost me as well, and I was placed back into foster care. I was placed with a wonderful young couple who were unable to conceive a child of their own. I would stay with this couple as a permanent foster ward, and they would be my parents till this day. Mom rocked me for the first week, as I was inconsolable from the trauma I had endured. When I finally began to sit and play, she noticedthat I brought things very close to my face when I looked at them. Soon after this, I was diagnosed as having Optic Atrophy, which means that I am legally blind. This disorder was caused by Shaken Baby Syndrome while in the adoption home.
What can I actually see? Well since I don’t have anything to compare my vision to, I was told to discribe it this way: Perfect eye sight is 20/20, and the higher the bottom number, the poorer the vision. My left eye is 20/400 and my right eye is 20/800. So my right eye is pretty much useless to me, and what you can see at 400 feet away, I would have to be 20 feet from in order to see. It sounds bad, but I’ve learned to adjust, and am pretty comfortable with what I can see.
It’s a pretty tragic start to life, but I know that God has been with me at every step of this journey, and has made me a stronger woman through my trials. Most babies who live though situations like this, suffer mental and physical disabilities, but too often they end up dying before their first birthday. Not me. I know God’s using me, and my eye sight is a great tool 🙂
Last month I realized that my eye balls are different shapes. As I have Hypothyroidism, and too often forget to take my meds, this saddened, but didn’t surprise me too much. Since then though, I’ve noticed that I’ve developed astigmatism in my right eye, and because of that, I’ve been getting the headaches. This means it’s time to see an optometrist about getting glasses. To most people, finding out you need glasses is an inconvenience, but I’ve actually spent the afternoon in tears. One reason I don’t mind having low vision, is because I’ve learned to fake normalcy. I shoulder check for drivers in the car, I look when people point something out, and I don’t make long eye contact. Most of the time, even my closest friends forget about my vision, which is a huge compliment. To me, glasses will take that all away. People will see that I have lower vision, and their eyes will be drawn to my eyes. I’ve always been able to say “glasses can’t help my vision”, because it’s true. Even with glasses, my vision won’t improve. Glasses are only to relieve me of the headaches.
So now what? Well, I have an appointment with my optometrist on September 19th. Until then, I will just work on being thankful, and accepting this new phase of my life. Another idea I had is that I may be able to improve my vision a bit by using my right eye more – forcing my brain to fill in details, like it does with my left eye. It’s worth a try 🙂
I’ll let you know how things progress…