With three weeks to go before leaving for University, Patty has developed inflammation in her eye (iritis). This is nothing to mess around with. Symptoms of Iritis include pain, sensitivity to light, blurred vision, etc. If left untreated, it can lead to vision loss and glaucoma.
She has been to an optometrist four times in a week. Her dad is helping her administer the eye drops (steroid and dilating). The pain is diminished and her iris is no longer sticking to the lens of her eye. But the inflammation is not improving as much as the doctor would like. If it is not improved enough by Tuesday, she’ll have to go to an ophthalmologist and get a shot in the eye.
Patty hates shots. Always has.
Now she can’t stop herself from thinking about it. I would have a hard time, too.
Before this, she was having some stress thinking and planning for her move to University. Would she be able to do her TA job? How would she do with her studies, and meeting her advising professor. How would she pay her rent before getting her first paycheck. Would everything fall into place? How would she feed herself, get herself where she needed to go? (Maybe some of these are my anxieties as well. Just maybe).
Now she fears this will keep her from going to University at all. Or at the least, it will make everything so much more difficult. She signed a lease in May. If she can’t go, she will be $10,000 in debt to the apartment complex. She would have to start paying her student loans from undergrad. She might not be able to fulfill her dream (PhD in history, teaching at University level). Maybe she has a genetic disorder. It turns out that Will has ankylosing spondylitis. Iritis is commonly the first symptom. He has had iritis four or five times since leaving college and was diagnosed through blood tests. Patty’s fear is reasonable. But she may have developed this due to other reasons…like stress.
This also put a complete stop to her driving lessons. We were hoping she would get her driver’s license before she left. Maybe this is a protection. The university is very compact for a place with 30,000 students.
Ralph and I have been trying to encourage her. We continue to prepare her for her time at University. I am buying towels, washcloths, and other odds and ends. Going through my spice cupboards to see what I have that I can share. Collecting items from my kitchen to give her, so we don’t have to spend money for them.
And we are praying that this will heal up before we leave for University. But if not, that she will be able to find effective treatment and be able to obtain it within her schedule. Patty has a full tuition scholarship and a stipend for a teaching assistantship. A lot is on the line for her.