Thursday, September 17, 2009

Seeing and Believing

Today has been a great day so far. I had an appointment with my eye doctor in Salt Lake this morning. My wonderful father-in-law, Larry, drove me (as usual) to SLC. This time, we had my two youngest boys with us, which was a whole new adventure. :) We brought Casen's remote control car and a bag of cookies, so the boys were set for the long wait in the lobby. Tolan met us there and the two of us went into meet with the doctor while Grandpa Brown stayed with the little boys.

The boys had a great time in the waiting room. They ran the car under chairs, down hallways and almost through the legs of some patients (oops). When we came out, they had chocolate on their faces and had no signs of being bored or upset by the wait. I will have to remember this for next time. :)

The doctor looked at my eye again, and told us both the good and bad news.

Good: My cornea is nearly completely recovered from all the damage it received in the early months of my paralysis! I have learned how to manage and take care of my eye (ie. I wear my patch) so it has allowed time for healing and prevented further damage. Hooray!

More Good: My lower eyelid is finally settling into place, with the collagen implant now resting up against my eye (as opposed to hanging out, which it was doing until a few weeks ago). Yeah!

Bad: My eyesight and depth perception are still off because of my inability to blink. The blinking motion is quite complex. Apparently, the blink (when watched in slow motion) occurs from the outside of the eye, into the inner part of the eye, next to the nose. This motion acts as a "squeegee" and it pushes fluids (ie. tears, goop) and gets it to the drainage "pipes" that rest underneath our inner eyes. Since I can't blink, the fluid continues to build up and rest in the center of my eye. You can actually see the liquid build up pooled on my lower lid. So, I am constantly looking through liquid, which is why my eyesight and perception are off.

Sadly, we can't do anything about this but give my eye time for the nerves to regenerate and hopefully start up the blinking motion again.

More Good News: However, there are products on the market to help people in my situation. There are sun glasses that come with "Moisture Chambers" built in, meaning, they actually create a little "seal" against your face, so the wind, debris, etc. cannot get into your eye. So, even though the eye doesn't blink, it is protected and kept moist, thus alleviating a few of the problems from not blinking.

A little trip to the Optical Center, and $120 later, I have new glasses that I can wear while I am driving or outside and they will protect my eye! (This isn't 100% foolproof, but much better than using just the eye patch all the time. The patches will still be used indoors when minimal protection is needed.)

So, my face may still be crooked (though Tolan thought the glasses were crooked :), but at least the glasses fit me and protect my eye. Tolan says I won't be setting any fashion or style trends, but I can go out and face "the elements" and that is awesome! Check them out!

As for my other good news, we have been working with the U Hospital and the insurance to get our bills figured out and paid. We have had one bill left, for $7,500 that has been disputed over and over again. The hopsital was ready to turn it over to collections. Our insurance told us not to pay it, but the hospital said to pay it. Ugh. Today, I got a wonderful call from the hospital rep and she told me they are going to waive this final bill!! We don't have to pay it, and neither does our insurance! In looking at our file, she doesn't know why we received a mysterious "discount" on our bill, but since it is there, she was able to waive this and count it as part of the discount...the discount we shouldn't have gotten, but is somehow there! So, they dropped a total of $30,000 (incluing the $7,500) from bill! WOW! Blessings and miracles!

All in all, a great day so far! Now, with my new, fancy glasses, I am going to go outside and work in my garden! Thanks for all the prayers. I have no doubt the prayers have created the blessings and miracles!


Els Manning said...

Hey... the glasses are good looking. Just dont go in hysterics when people come to ask for an autograph..thinking you are a famous person..
And oh my gosh, the bills...that is so good. We are getting Keith's bills slowly, and i shake each time i open one. But ah, small price in the grand scale of things right? Keep up the progress! I am thrilled for you, and your lovely family. And Daven is still my little ray of sunshine. He is the cutest little thing in the nursery. Really!

Flints Facts said...

I am so glad you had such a positive day!!! Always thinking of you!!! Love ya!!

gotoit said...

Those sunglasses are really nice. I need to find out more about them to benefit my son in law. Is there a specific brand I ask for?

wjmom said...

I think the glasses look really great--and so do you!

britt said...

that is A LOT of good news!! And I don't think the glasses look all that bad :) What a nice surprise about the bill. The blessings just never seem to stop and I am happy that things are working out in so many ways, in YOUR favor!
Love ya
we need to get together again soon!!

Melissa and Jessie said...

That is amazing about the discount. I am so happy that things are finally looking up for you guys. Love you!

Nichole Giles said...

Amazing! That's all I can say about the bill thing.

And the glasses, awesome and cool. Believe me when I say you're starting a new fashion trend. Those are seriously stylin'!

Carolyn said...

Aloha Jodi,

The glasses look GREAT! Miracles do happen and are happening all around us...WOW! I am happy that things are working in your favor and over period of time. God is always watching over you, and all of us daily. Hawaiian Airlines always seem to have great rountrip deals from the mainland..the problem is the airline doesn't fly out of SLC only select airports. You can check out their website; still searching...have a wonderful week.

Lots of alohas and hugs, Carolyn

Belinda said...

Good news with the eye! And personally - I like the glasses - I think they are far nicer than the FLY eyed ones - that for some reason are popular???? Go set a new trend - girls will look good again!! :)

Thanks for sharing - blessings about the bills! We get so caught up in seeing negative and no hope - there really are good people out there - and they DO want to help!!
Love ya x

James said...

Jodi...the glasses are just like motorcycle goggles. Looks like you're ready to ride with me on my Harley!

Jim Hopkinson