What is that blinking oblong circle across my vision? I blinked but it didn’t go away. I looked at my hand and it was covering it, but I could see through it. It had a saw-toothed edge that blinked bright rainbow colors. I covered my right eye and then my left and it was still there. It felt like it was in my eye not something on the surface. Jim and I were sitting in our truck near a lake looking at places to stay after this lake. I laid the seat back and closed my eyes. It was still there but the size of the oblong circle had grown, and it was beginning to fade. By 15 minutes it was gone. It looked like a combination of these images.
We went back to the RV and I made lunch. I felt a little bit nauseous, tired, and a slight headache in the back of my head and forehead. As we finished lunch, I saw it again while looking at the floor. It wasn’t as bright but in the same place, the left lower quadrant of my vision and lasted 13 minutes. We prayed, Lord should we go to the ER? Is this serious? Is this the onset of a stroke or a seizure? I’d never had this happen.
We decided to go. The hospital in Martinsville was about 30 minutes away down the windy country roads. My anxiety was high, but I still felt a peace that God was in control.
When things are out of my control they are in God’s control.
I explained my symptoms to the triage nurse, she tagged me and led me into the ER area and room 18. A nurse came in and asked the same questions which I answered, then the ER doctor followed. He did some tests to determine if I’d had a stroke. Squeeze my fingers, touch my nose, lift your arm, follow my finger, etc. He left and I heard over the loudspeaker, “We have a possible stroke in room 18”. That’s me! Oh, no! Immediately several nurses entered the room. They moved at lightning speed. One put in an IV and took blood, and gave me IV fluids. Then another person did an EKG, CT scan and chest x-ray. They wanted to do an MRI but they don’t work on Saturdays.
All the tests came back negative for stroke, thank you Jesus, but the doctor wanted me to stay the night for observations and do the MRI on Sunday. So, I was admitted, and God blessed me with not one but two Christian nurse/PA’s. Their care was paramount to my feeling peaceful through this incident. In fact, the PA ended up having a mutual friend in Wycliffe whom we had a part in recruiting to work in Cameroon. What a blessing!
Sunday morning the PA apologized and said they didn’t have someone to do the MRI so I’d have to return on Monday, so they released me. We returned Monday to find out we’d have to wait for approval from our insurance since this was for outpatient, not ER. We went to brunch and while arriving I had another occurrence. The doctors made it clear I needed to come back to the ER if it happened again. So back we went. At least this time most of the tests had been done except another blood test and the MRI. I think the attending ER doctor was embarrassed we had to return so he was making sure I got all the necessary tests done before going home this time.
I don’t know if you like MRI machines, but I don’t. I have tendonitis in my ears so all that banging, beeping, clunking is very annoying, and the tightness makes me very anxious. Thankfully they give you a choice of music and they put on the local Christian station. The first song was one that I really like and identify with. It’s about letting go of control and just being at rest in Him. That so encouraged me and helped me keep my eyes on Him even when I didn’t think I could take another minute of it.
“Everything came back negative; no stroke, no aneurysm, no clot, and no tumor.” Wow… what a relief! We asked if it was an ocular or visual migraine since others had suggested it and he couldn’t say for sure, just that I should follow up with a neurologist in Tucson. My brother in law sent us an article with pictures (above) about migraines. https://www.allaboutvision.com/conditions/ocular-migraine.htm I’ll see the neurologist Aug 14. The ER Doc prescribed a couple drugs to help if I have the symptoms again. But I’ll be cautious using them as the side-effects from what they gave me in the ER made me really sleepy but I couldn’t rest cuz I had restless body syndrome.
What have I learned from this? When things are out of my control they are in God’s control. I’m a “why” person. Why did this happen? I have done lots of reflecting. I think probably I wasn’t dealing well with some hurtful thing that happened last month to us. I couldn’t control that and my default is to try harder to control my life, people, circumstances around me. It was not working!!! I was exhausted and probably exhausting my poor hubby too. Then add living on the road and not sure where to go next. My emotions were frazzled. This “occurrence” gave me the time to reflect, rest more, and begin to let go of the things I can’t control. To place my trust in my Father who does have my life in His hands. I am so happy to have a loving Father who knows what we need to help us back to a better place of trust and rest in Him.
Seems wise to head home and regroup without the stresses of living on the road. The Lord worked out the details to get the RV back to the owners. A wonderful friend is blessing me with a ticket to fly home from Charlotte and Jim will drive our truck back, stopping to see his dad in Wichita for Father’s Day. Only our Lord could orchestrate all this to work out. We are so thankful!