Monday, May 2, 2011

I Let It GO

I can't wrap my head around this one. I don't get it. It doesn't make sense. I try to take care of myself. I watch what I eat and drink, and exercise more than most folks my age. And,more importantly, why now? Things are going pretty good for me.

About one year ago I started having trouble seeing out of my right eye. I thought I might have kicked up some dust in it on a recent road ride since I wasn't wearing glasses. I let it go. After a few months I started to notice things getting foggy. It scared me a little. I let it go. Six months later I was having difficulty reading to Sydney. I started borrowing Jim's reading glasses. I also was getting some mild headaches. I avoided the computer and reading books and magazines. I let it go. Soon after that, I avoided driving at night. The glare from the other headlights made it almost impossible to see anything.

Some of you might have noticed that I did not attend a single night ride this year. The light hurt my eyes. My night laps at Burnin' and at RIM were frustrating because I couldn't see as far ahead down the trail as I could in the daylight. I had to renew my driver's license in March and failed the eye sight test. I had to have a restriction put on my license. I let it go.

What I have failed to mention was that I had been to a Dr., an opthamologist, who performed several expensive tests, spent maybe 3 minutes with me, and told me I had perfect eyes. He did not understand what I was complaining about. I let it go.

Here I am a year later, I went to see a new Dr who informs me.... " I don't know why or even how, but , you have cataracts." I said " Excuse me?"

How a cataract affects your vision

normal vision Photo depicting how a cataract affects vision  cloudy vision

A cataract is a clouding of the normally clear lens of the eye. Like looking through a foggy or frosty window. Makes it difficult to read and drive a car, especially at night.
They develop slowly, it took nearly a year to wipe out my eye. They target people in their 60's or 70's. It is very rare that someone in their 40's gets them, especially since they do not run in my family. But there's good news. I can be as good as new, possibly better, by having cataract surgery.I can't let it go any longer. There is a chance of blindness if I leave it untreated.

I explained I had some mountain biking races coming up so surgery would need to be in June after Dirty Kanza. She said to be particularily careful while riding at night. Wonderful. Syllamo's Revenge would be over in the daylight, I hope. But the DK200 was going to be a lot of darkness. Very dark. They don't line their gravel roads with streetlights in Kansas , do they?

So, fellas with those incredible lights that I have borrowed in the past, Stormy, Gino, Mashor, or Busken, if you don't need your lights the weekend of June 3-5th , I would like to borrow them again.

I did not write this post for sympathy or to feel sorry for myself. I used my blog as an outlet for my emotions and I wanted to leave you with this piece of advice. " NEVER let it go"


  1. sorry to hear the news. Ditch the DK200 and get the surgery race is worth an eye or threat of loss. Lots of other races in better venues to pick up later in the season.

    Get well, and take care of that eye!

  2. I thought they waited til a certain point before they'd operate on cataracts? Are you there, or am I just remembering that wrong?

    This is the second post I've read lately about not waiting to get something checked out. I think maybe I'm getting the message.

  3. Hey Matt, the Dr. said it may take at least a month to get an appt. for surgery I meet my surgeon on May 11th for a consultation. Then need to get a physical and several blood tests. Kate,unfortunately I am past that point. She could not even see into my eye. I wish I had taken care of this in January. Hope you got the message. Never wait.

  4. Wow! Take Care Wendy. That is nothing to mess around with. Matt is correct there will be plenty more rides and think how enjoyable they will be when you can see.
    Rubber Side Down