Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Helen C.K.S. is back! Don’t fail to follow her link to the Handmade Ryan Gosling Tumbler.

There never was such a woman for good tips on websites and films. I offer my own with appropriate diffidence: Twenty Twelve is back. Friday, 10 pm, BBC 2. Lord Downton Abbey (=Hugh Bonneville) is transmogrified into Ian Fletcher, head of the Deliverance Committee in charge of arrangements for the Olympic Games. Olympophobes like me and my husband may enjoy it a teensy bit more than the general population, but there is a lot for everyone if it's half as good as the first series.

The v-neck vest needs one more evening, or part of one, after all. I’ve ribbed both sleeve-holes and am about halfway through the neck ribbing. I started at one shoulder and picked up stitches down the front at the agreed rate, three stitches for every four rows, and then back up the second side to the other shoulder – and only then, stopped to count. I had exactly the same number of stitches on each side – 51. I’m not boasting or anything.

There is much to be said, and comments to be commented on, a propos both garlic mustard and the Sky Scarf, but I think I will deviate into Something Completely Different (and self-indulgent).

On Monday evening, for half an hour or so, my vision was distorted as if I were looking through tears, or broken glass. I have learned, fairly recently in a long life, to worry about retinal detachment so I wondered if this were that, and went screaming to the optician yesterday, and it wasn’t, my retinas are fine.

When I had my cataracts done four or five years ago, the surgeon said that my eye sockets were unusually deep and that that made retinal detachment more likely than for people with shallower eye sockets. Live and learn. A whole new anxiety to put up there with macular degeneration. My sister is a doctor, you will remember, so naturally I conferred with her on the subject.

Within a week, she woke up with symptoms of retinal detachment – it was like looking through lace, she said. She had prompt laser treatment, and all is well. But it proves that it can happen, and that God has a sense of humour.

The optician thought my symptom sounded like the visual distortions which often precede a migraine – or can happen, painlessly, with no headache to follow. That’s news. See a doctor if it goes on happening, she said. I am so relieved that my sight is, for the moment, safe, that I don’t care about anything else.

But it was a scare, and a chilling one. A reminder – I don’t want to be too gloomy here – that something serious and bad will happen in the reasonably near future, given my age. 


  1. Helen's Ryan Gosling link had me snorting...

  2. TheresaI12:35 PM

    Those type of migraines aren't age related. I started having them in my late thirties and they went on for a couple of years until I found the food allergy that was triggering them. Remember your episode of sore throat and flu like symptoms of a few days ago. Did you eat something similar? Or exposed to something similar in your environment?

  3. Definitely sounds like migraine aura. I've had familial migraine since I was a small child, often preceded by aura. Two of my three children inherited migraine, but no aura. My mother and her grandmother had them too. They are genetic for sure, several genes have been identified, and are matrilineal.
    Here's a good video about aura:
    and Oliver Sacks, the neurologist, has a wonderful book about migraine (he is a migraineur himself).

  4. Sarah JS3:29 PM

    I'd never heard of aura (vision disturbance) being related to migraines until last fall when my 13 year old called from school. "Uh, hi Mom. The nurse thought I should call you."

    "Are you okay?!"

    "I'm fine. I just can't see."

    How is a mom supposed respond to that?!

    She actually could see, but not in the center of her vision -- or not well. Fortunately one of my co-workers knew of this type of migraine & allayed my fears. Funny thing is we have absolutely no family history of migraines, ocular or otherwise. Go figure. Fortunately, she's only had the one.

    Glad your situation was no more worse than a migraine.

  5. Even pickups on both sleeves! Well, I do believe that is something to quietly crow about. ;)

  6. Almost sounded like Philip Larkin for a moment, Jean. Sudden terrible events can strike us at any age - but they are not certain. "Honour, love, obedience, troops of friends and that which should accompany old age" you can look to have - with certainty.