Walking on Eggshells

Waking up with double vision on the first Wednesday of October 5 years ago was the first time I was suddenly made aware something had changed with my eyes. When in reality, there were many clues that I was unaware of.

I made note of how my under eyes looked different on a road trip over Labor Day weekend. I had failed to recognize that my eyes had changed since July. Things were shifting subtly over the months leading up to the double vision entering my reality, I just did not notice it.

Walking on eggshells

The process of symptoms going away felt a lot like walking on eggshells. While I was blissfully unaware my eyes were changing before my thyroid eye disease (TED) diagnosis, I was painfully aware and obsessed with noticing how my symptoms were going away.

Every day I would wake up with a slim feeling of hope that maybe today would be the day my symptoms would be gone. I would emerge from this bad dream I found myself in and be free of the stress that came along with feeling helpless to double vision, depth perception issues, and light sensitivity.

Some days, I thought there was progress. My double vision was not as intense. I did not run into the table corner in my kitchen that always seemed to be in my way. My eyes could handle the light at the store when I forgot my hat at home.

Feeling frustrated

I noticed a pattern in my TED healing journey. One or two really good days would follow a week of intense symptoms. It felt as though my eyes were trying to hang on to what they had become accustomed to for whatever reason. Now I know it was just my body and my eyes trying to heal from thyroid eye disease.

When my symptoms were really intense after a small stretch of good days, I would feel frustrated. I would often cry because I had no control over the bad days. I just had to hunker down and get through it. But I was tired of doing this. I had done this for 2 years and the process was awful.

Time moved the slowest the third year I had TED. The days dragged on being in a global pandemic. This gave my mind something else to focus on. When reality slowed down for everyone, I realized how still my life had been for the previous 2 years. I did not want to make any sudden movements in my life out of fear something would happen with my eyes.

How I felt as my eyes healed from thyroid eye disease

My fears did not come true. My eyes are not as they used to be but they are closer to normal than they have been. My double vision eventually corrected itself. I stopped running into things. The precautions I took out of fear seem unnecessary in retrospect.

Though, I understand why I stood still for so long. I could not shake the feeling of walking on eggshells for years. I do not feel it anymore but whenever I think about that time in my life, the uneasy frustrated feelings are one of the first things I think of.

What feeling would you say describes your TED journey?

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