Even though I really don't feel like talking about it, I do feel that since you, my devoted readers, have endured my incessant whining about my eyes for the last 4 months now, I owe you a conclusion to the story.
Many people have commented recently that my eyes look better. True, but false. That was all the work of a handy little anti-inflammatory, which took care of the symptoms, but not the mysterious problem. So, 6 days ago I stop taking the anti-inflammatory drops in preparation for my visit to a specialist. Yes, that's right. I somehow got in to see a specialist.
Today, I headed up to North York to sit in the office of a Harvard Medical School grad amongst 65-year-old Chinese cataract surgery candidates for an inordinately long period of time. After paying an equally inordinately large sum of money (since I don't have OHIP, the current price of my eyes in recent months is well exceeding a grand) to have a topographical scan of my eyes done, I saw the doctor.
"You're having a severe allergic reaction to something," he initially told me. But to what?
And then somehow, the topic of my facial eczema came up. Oh, right. Now I remember--because I brought it up. Waaaay back in October, when I was obsessively googling eye disorders on a daily basis, I came across blepharitis, a condition that is linked to allergies and eczema. Ever since then, I've made sure to mention my eczema to every doctor I've seen, without mentioning blepharitis directly. (Even before I came across this particular connection, I asked the second doctor that I saw, back in September, if the scales and eczema on my eyelids had anything to do with it. "This is an eye condition," she told me, "it had nothing to do with your skin.") I don't want to be one of those people who Internet googles and self-diagnoses and argues with doctors. I don't want to come across as a hypochrondriac. It's not my style.
After discussing my eczema and my history in tropical countries briefly, the doctor ran off to see another patiern, my pupils were dilated with eyedrops and I was sent back to the waiting room for 1/2 hour (where my eyes began to feel like heavy globs in my head) before I was called back into his office.
He examined my eyes again and wrote me a mega prescription for two new eye drops, plus another antibiotic without saying a word (apart from telling me that my severe astigmatism can result in corneal diseases. Cool, hey?)
"Your eyelids are waxy," he finally said. "You'll have to put hot compresses on your eyes every morning and every night for 10 minutes to loosen the wax."
"For how long?"
"For the rest of your life. This condition is chronic."
"And what is this condition?" I asked him.
And what was it? Let's say it altogether now:
Let this be a lesson to you all. In the wonders of the Internet age, self-diagnosis is a handy tool. Don't be afraid to be one of those assholes who takes a print-off into a doctor's office. It might save you a lot of time and money.
As for the conclusion: I'm sure it's not a major condition, but it right now it feels like a death sentence. The days of shooting every male in sight saucy looks with confidence and might are gone. The days of glasses, nights in and no makeup seem here to stay.
Fuck. You might as well stop reading my blog now.