Friday, May 13, 2011


When the ophthalmologist asked Josh to cover his left eye and identify the shapes on the screen, the little guy gave it his best effort, squinted, half-heartedly hazarded a guess or two, then slumped and sighed: "My eye ith just too lay-thee right now."

Turns out that's exactly right, and exactly all there is to it. Garden-variety lazy eye (a term the endearingly German-accented doctor still used, so I will, too) brought on by asymmetric astygmatism. His left eye is fine; his right eye, not so much. He will need a corrective lens for the right eye and a lens that slightly blurs the vision on the left, which should, at least theoretically, encourage the right eye to pull more of its own weight. Then, in four to six months, we add in an eye patch, buy him a flowy white cotton blouse and teach him to greet his friends with, "Ahoy, Matey." Too bad Archimedes didn't live to see it--she could have perched on his shoulder to great effect.

Tomorrow, we go to order glasses, preferably in a nice swim goggle-like rubber frame that straps firmly onto his pea-sized head. Not exactly the handsomest option, but clearlythe most difficult to break or lose. (Jeff's optometrist today suggested a $199 pair of Juicy Couture children's frames in a supremely delicate red and orange wire; I laughed with hearty hilarity, assuming she was joking. She was not.)

So, all is well. No crisis, panic over. Whew.

Friday, May 06, 2011

Sudden onset panic

I got home from work on Tuesday and found Josh at the dining table smiling and looking at me with his eyes crossed. I thought he was doing it to be silly and didn't see it happen again that night . At school the next afternoon, one of his teachers saw that his right eye was wandering inward a bit. We called for an appointment and were given a date...three weeks from now. Last night, the cross-eye was more pronounced and lasted longer. And then this morning his right eye was completely turned in. Completely.

Google has been spectacularly helpful in engendering blind panic: damage to the sixth cranial nerve! Brain tumor! Intracranial swelling! Or, you know, the more common and less spectacular options that are barely registering in my overheated head: asymmetrical far-sightedness (which, oddly, can apparently manifest suddenly--who knew?) and a transient complication of certain ear, nose and throat viruses.

We've managed to find another pediatric ophthalmologist who can see Josh next Thursday, but, still, not till Thursday. It feels so very wrong to not do something. Except panic.

Monday, May 02, 2011

Show & Tell

We told the kids a few days ago. It was getting hard to keep it from them--they wondered why I was always sick, why I stopped making dinner, why I couldn't pick them up, and why--why--is your belly so big, Mommy?

Olivia cried bitterly for half an hour upon learning that it was not to be a little sister, but rebounded with a cheerful conclusion that I "will have this baby boy and then another girl afterward." I have yet to fully disabuse her of the unfounded hope as it's currently helping to keep the peace, but if I am certain of one thing, it is this: Whatever the outcome, we are done. This is absolutely, unquestionably my last pregnancy. Done.

I look about five months' pregnant here at the 14-week mark. (Way to keep your shape, abdominals.) Which means I've had to come clean to everyone at work. Until recently, several of them apparently thought I was on chemo due to all the puking and my lovely gray-green hue. (Ah, just dawned on me that this explains the concerned looks and the recurring advice that I should "go home early" to "spend time with the family.")

Aside from the hyperemesis, this pregnancy seems to be going well. Had a scare on Friday--minor contractions that lasted about two hours but went away after lying down and drinking a week's worth of water. No return, no bleeding. No movement yet, either, which makes me vaguely nervous, but I know it's still pretty early and the position of the placenta can affect things.

Hoping for reassurance at tomorrow's OB appointment. I actively dread the thought of having to un-tell all of these virtual strangers, much less the kids.