Thursday, April 16, 2009

From Superglue to Vicodin

So, today started out pretty inauspiciously. I’m pretty geeked about my upcoming vision improvement. With my eye surgery at 3:00, I had time to run a few errands today. Laundry, Drycleaning, your usual nothin’ doin’ Thursday junk. Around 10:00 I threw my running clothes on to get a 9 miler in before I left for my surgery. “Hmmm, I seem to have split a fingernail.” So, off to the bathroom to bondo up the back of my nail with superglue. Now, I’ve done this only about a million times before. Superglue lid is stuck. Okay, fine. Just stab it, then throw it out. Step 1) Grab sharp implement. Step 2) Stab. Step 3) SHIT SHIT SHIT. At exactly a 82.5 degree angle, the superglue shot out of the tube from the top of the counter 3 feet down, and spewed into my left eye. A ton of it. Shit, I am somewhat shaking, just writing about it.

I quickly dunked my head under the sink faucet and kept my eye open for about 10 minutes under the streaming water. Uhm, not good enough. I couldn’t shut my eye, and it burned like hell. SHIT. Now what? This is bad bad bad. I can’t see out of my left eye. Everything looks white. I think, “Hmmm, maybe my contact lens saved me!” Immediately, I knew I have a big problem. WHAT TO DO? WHAT TO DO? WHERE’S MY FRIGGIN’ PHONE? AGH. Jacket pocket. Okay, where’s jacket? Do I call 911 or Jim or just drive? Which is faster? Think to self: You can't drive, and you’ll get some moron at 911, call Jim. He’s far but probably faster. Since I’m in the apartment complex, I really don’t know any neighbors except the women of the evening across the street. And none of the other neighbors speak English, I’m pretty sure.

With my eye stuck under running water, I call Jim. Thank God, he is in town this week. He says, “I’m on my way.” About 25 minutes later (or, in my world of stinging-eye-burn, about 4 years later, he arrives) We drive to the emergency room (about 2 miles away, or about 400 swerves and left turns and right turns) with half my head stuck in David’s popcorn bowl filled with cold water. The water is sloshing all over me and the inside of the car. Just horrifying, I’m thinking, “Calm down, calm down, one eye still works. Everything else on body works.” I look at Jim and say, “I’m such an idiot. Such an idiot, I’ve done that a thousand times and that NEVER happened. I’m so glad this happened to me and not David.” (Not that David is even allowed to go NEAR chemicals, but just that, well, in perspective, at least I’m old.) I figure now, the damage is pretty much done, so I say to Jim, “And don’t you dare call me Cyclops. I hope I’m not going to end up making only right turns the rest of my life.”

Emergency room: I get in, in 2 seconds. I guess, when you spew chemicals in your eye, there is no waiting list. They ask me all my vitals. Bloodpressure, pulse. I’m sure I’m in a bit of shock, they ask, my height and weight. The nurse walks out, and I say to Jim, “Uhm, I may have slimmed 5 pounds off the real number.”

So, they get me in an “eye room” about 4 minutes later, an eye doc comes in. He looks like a good-looking Hugh Grant (I can see this with my good eye – uh huh) and puts some drops in my eye and says, “This is going to sting.” And I say, “Doc, you got nothin’ on superglue.” So, he is nice and calming and after poking with lights, “look over here, look over there, look down, look up…” I can see Jim with my good eye sitting on the chair right under the cross on the wall (it’s a Catholic hospital) and I realize I’m in the best hands ever, and I breathe out for the first time in about 45 minutes. I’m just thankful for everything I have. The doc and nurses prod, pokes, and peels off my contact in 4 pieces he says, “Okay, you’re going to be fine. This isn’t uncommon. It should take a couple days for the glue to peel off.”

So, my vision is pretty cloudy out of that eye, but he said that’s normal since it is pretty scratched up. He showed Jim all the scratches and the glue with the CSI Miami Blacklight. I have some antibiotic ointment and drops and the antibiotic ointment softens up the superglue and it will peel off either by me, or by itself it will be a bit slower. My eye lids are still kind of jammed with superglue in various spots. It’s stuck in my eyelashes, so I’m a little leery about pulling it off, since I think I already lost about 20 eyelashes. My undereye area and the outer corner, looks like I went a couple of rounds with a bad Botox doctor.

And, thus the story ends with vicodin, which is what he gave me to take the pain away. I guess it’s working. And obviously, I didn’t get the implantable lens today, but I talked to the eye doc and I’m rescheduled for next week and the week after and he'll also check out my superglue eye next week to make sure it's back to normal before he works on the right one.

Here's my eye after about 4 hours:


  1. I guess it's bad manners that I LOL'd at how there's no waiting list when you spill chemicals in your eye! But geeeez.....I would've been flipped out too! Funny that this is a common occurrence in ER's-and glad that you are going to be okay.

    Enjoy your vicodin high!

  2. Eeeeeeee! I was laughing and wincing at the same time. I have definite "eye issues"...if anything comes near my eyes, I freak out big time. I would have probably had a heart attack if I had gotten superglue in my eye! Anyway, glad it will be okay!!

  3. I'm glad you are ok....

  4. OMG, you poor thing!!! That is just horrible and to think of the timing, too, it's freaky. Many many hugs to you, I can't imagine how scary that must have been. Wow. Just wow.

  5. Update: I'm really afraid to peel off the glue. I sit with a warm compress on all day. My lashes are still stuck, and now I've lost like 30 of them. Time to google how long they take to grow back....

  6. OMG - looking at the picture of your eye made BOTH my eyes glad you are OK!

  7. Holy crap! I'm so sorry that happened to you. Glad to hear everything is going to be okay. Vicodin rocks, though. I had that after I had my wisdom teeth removed. Good stuff!

  8. Could not have said it better myself even though I did:

    "I still am in shock that I did that. I just can't believe that I did that. I am such an idiot." June 18, 2006

    At least you're doing a lot better than me. I'm still fat, a real prick (according to Stevie Williams) and I'm still an idiot.