No, we don't have ghosts. That I know of. And no insect infestations. We do have cats, but not in the places I thought I was seeing them - waist height in thin air, for instance.
What I'm seeing is floaters in my eyes, and especially, this weekend, in my left eye. Floaters have been my constant companions for many years now. Most people will get a few as they age - they are bits of tissue that come free from the interior of the eye as it gets older - but mostly the bits tend to "disappear," by which eye doctors mean they will settle within the eye, and, short of getting stirred up, will not interfere with vision.
I had a few extra show up a half a dozen years ago, and those ones came with flashing lights. I'm more afraid of losing my vision than any other medical loss, and I was aware that floaters plus lights were a warning sign of possible problems, so I got checked out right away. Luckily, things were fine.
Then two years ago I noticed a small loss of peripheral vision in one eye, and this time things were not fine. I was hustled to the regional hospital for immediate surgery for retinal detachment.
During the procedure, the eye surgeon removed a little of the fluid in my eye and replaced it with a bubble of gas. Not the kind that you put in your car, more like a bubble of air. The gas bubble helps keep the retina in place while the lasered repair is healing, and is slowly absorbed over the next few weeks.
The most wonderful part about this surgery was that my sight in that eye was saved. I am so thankful to live in a time when this problem can be repaired.
A close second in the "wonderful" category, though, was that the surgeon was able to remove my biggest floaters along with the bit of fluid he took from my eye. For several years I had been straining to see through or around a couple of large, translucent floaters. Unlike dark floaters, translucent ones don't settle. They caused quite a bit of eye strain and limited the number of hours I could work at my office job. It was a huge relief to be rid of them.
Unfortunately, the surgery itself caused a few new floaters, but they are the dark ones and most of the time they are well behaved and out of sight. Every now and then, though, something I do will stir them up. And that is the situation this weekend. I'm not sure what I did, so I can't even avoid doing it in future. But they got stirred up quite nicely.
So I am unsettled and worried. I try to see the floaters as they whiz around in my field of vision, to decide if there are any new ones in there. New floaters could mean trouble - further deterioration within the eye. I have a mental catalogue of the spots in that eye: large triangular black chunk; medium round black outline with clear middle; smallish black speck; medium irregular black piece with straggly edges. But there are a couple little ones I can't remember seeing before. Or were they there and I only remember the large ones?
I'm in no hurry to have eye surgery again, although I would not hesitate if it became necessary. I just don't like the uncertainty hanging over me.
|This is the kind of thing I'd miss seeing if I lost my vision. Don't worry, I don't dwell on it. But this seemed as good a time as any to post this photo. Getting these colours true in a photo made me pretty happy.|
P. S. The weirdest thing about that gas bubble was that it caused upside down vision in the operated eye. I'm not science-y but I think it's the same principle as looking at yourself in a spoon. Convex, concave, blah, blah. Anyway, as the bubble re-absorbed and eventually disappeared, normal vision returned.