Saturday, September 3, 2011

O, The Guilt.............

About 2 years ago, Tenly was in her first preschool class and a wonderful preschool in Columbus, TX. It was a wonderful place and Tenly just adored her teachers, as did I. During the school year, they do the routine general eye and ear exams for all the students. Well, Tenly failed her eye exam, she was 3 at the time. Just to clarify, at that time- Tenly was very reserved/cautious in unfamiliar places with unfamiliar people. She's an observer, she totally observes and evaluates a situation and surroundings before she interacts or puts herself "out there". Therefore, we- and her teachers- didn't put much weight into the fact that she didn't pass it.
That takes us to her 4 year check up last year in Katy, TX. It wasn't her typical nurse, so yet again she clammed up and was extremely conservative and uncooperative with communicating what she could/could not see. The nurse and I blew it off, assuming it was a case of her being bashful at the time.
So, here we are to about a week ago at Tenly's 5 year exam. Much to my satisfaction, Tenly has become much more confident in herself and her ability to communicate. It seems as if, she still takes time to evaluate her situation/surroundings, but is able to do it much more quickly. First thing they did was her eye exam, they had a great way of doing it there and it really did put Tenly immediately at ease. She first went right up to the chart and identified each object to the nurse, before going down the hall to read from a distance with each eye individually. They asked she read with her right eye first, and she told them every single picture (up to 20/30) very confidently and loudly. Then we covered her right and asked her to read with her left. Now, if you think back- the first big picture on the chart is a pretty big sail boat- which Tenly confidently saw with her right eye- but could NOT see that big boat with her left. I literally stood there with that "Dumb Bubba" look on my face. I looked at Tenly and said, "Tenly, you can see that- what do you see up there?" She then tried to move my hand off of her right eye "so she could see". That was after we had done the whole thing over 3 times. When the nurse saw her try to move my other hand "so she could see", she instantly knew we had a problem. Because once I took my hand away, Tenly instantly said, "Oh, that's a sailboat." I was absolutely SHOCKED. At that point they were showing her to have 20/70-20/80 in her left eye. That's a drastic difference.
The Doctor suggested we get her in to a specialist ASAP. We were given some pretty major favor and were given an appointment the following Thursday (when there were no appointments available for 2 months) with the best specialist in the area. Tenly did great at the appointment, well- until they had to put the drops in her eyes, but she recovered quickly. The whole staff and Doctor were amazing. There was no doubt from the get go that Tenly was going to need glasses. Once we saw the Doctor, he informed me that she has a double astigmatism in her left eye and a mild one in her right. Her brain has completely stopped using her left eye and thus is over using her right.
Much to Tenly's excitement, she is getting glasses. Her exact words were, "Wow, so I get to be a grown up like Daddy (daddy wears glasses)? That is SO cool!" We are praying that her brain cooperates and starts using the glasses, or else we will have to patch her right eye to force her brain to start using the left one again. Something we truly do not want to do as she is just starting school, learning to write and read.
She had no problem picking out her purple glasses with flowers on them, first ones she put on and refused to try anymore because, "...they are perfectly beautiful...".
What does all this bring to a Mom- MOMMY GUILT!! Why didn't I follow up the first time? Why didn't I follow up the second time? Were there signs? Did I ignore the signs? Should I have been looking for signs? MY POOR BABY!! Yada, Yada, Yada....and I go on and on...! But, it's not helping me or Tenly to flood myself with guilt. I'll share what's helped, I'm thankful..................
Here's a really great part to this story- my being grateful and thankful part! This all showed up when we still have insurance. Not only insurance, but also really great vision insurance. Tenly's glasses, would of cost us close to $200,  but we paid $25!!!! I am Thankful! He knows, God knows............and my Tenly (and we) are just fine!
(BTW, have some updates on our situation, that seems to change by the day, but that'll be the next post....Maybe.)

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