Wild Thing and vision loss

This past year, Wild Thing lost part of her sight to wet macular degeneration. Reading’s possible but not simple. She’s had to quit driving, which since we live at the end of beyond is a major adjustment for both of us. Independence matters hugely to her. And to me. And around here, without a car? It’s difficult. The village is on a bus route, although with endless government budget cuts I’m not sure how long that will be true. But even so, it’s a minor route. You can get to one of two nearby towns and a village or four, but you may have hours to kill before you can get home.

She’s gotten an electric bike–she has enough sight left to manage that–but even so it’s a huge adjustment for both of us.

So I’m going to break two unwritten rules here: 1. This isn’t a me-blog, and I don’t write about our lives unless they touch on the intercultural mayhem of two Americans living in Britain; 2. I don’t reblog anything that isn’t tightly related to that topic. But hell, they’re my rules, so I get to break them. I’m linking you to a post on Wild Thing’s blog, where she writes about the last day she drove to the moors so she could do some photography. She knew she wouldn’t be driving much longer. She wasn’t sure how much longer she’d be able to use a camera. The day had the intensity of a farewell. The photographs are damn good.

If we’re lucky, the doctors will be able to stop any further deterioration (all hail the National Health Service, which allows everyone access to free medical care) and she’ll be able to keep on using a camera. But we won’t know for another couple of months.

This is one of Wild Thing's photos from about a year ago.

This is one of Wild Thing’s photos from about a year ago.

41 thoughts on “Wild Thing and vision loss

  1. Oh! Our neighbour’s husband has this and it’s been really hard watching him. She’s also got vision problems and has been diagnosed with cataracts – they can’t operate: yet. Now it’s watching them: fiercely independent and battling on. And then the news that their daughter has it and in her mid-30’s is losing her sight. She’s come to live in the village because she doesn’t have to drive here (she isn’t allowed to anymore – can’t renew her licence). I do hope that whatever procedure is available happens soon and is fantastically successful.

    Strength to you both.

    PS Magnicificent photos

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so sorry to read of WT’s condition and the impact it will have on your lives. The loss of independence must be a very difficult adjustment to make. Given that WT is obviously an accomplished photographer, the loss of her sight must be devastating. I do hope the treatment works wonders. Best wishes to you both for this new phase in your lives.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I understand your feelings. My wife is losing her sight to a retina problem with no solutions. This frustrates the retinal specialist because doctors want to fix things and there is nothing he can do except to check on a regular basis for any bleeding in the eye. She does not drive anymore and even with assisted devices she cannot see everything. So the only thought I can give you is that you are not alone in this journey. Jim

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for that, Jim. We’ve suddenly discovered that we’re part of a secret club–people with vision loss; their partners; their families. In an odd way, it’s heartening to know we’re not alone. My love to your wife, and to you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That is one of the problems, if you don’t have dark sunglasses on, a white cane or guide dog then others have no idea you have a vision loss. I do all of the driving now and we have added more lights in the house. I put in battery operated motion sensor lights in the hallways so when we have to get up at night we have immediate light. I don’t know about the old saying that when you loose one sense the others become stronger. I lost the hearing in my right ear but my eyes did not get any better. Keep the faith. Jim

        Liked by 1 person

  4. My uncle had the same. They don’t seem to be as strict in Florida about taking away licenses as they ought to be, but without adequate public transportation folks keep struggling along. My uncle finally gave it up after an accident. Luckily no one was hurt other than the vehicles. I’m noticing my vision getting worse and new glasses don’t seem to be helping. My heart goes out to Wild Thing. The thought of having to give up photography (great image BTW) is heart breaking.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The lack of public transportation does put terrible pressure on people to keep driving when they shouldn’t–although that doesn’t excuse it. When you think of the damage any of us could do, it’s sobering. Or should be.

      Will you forgive some advice? If the new glasses aren’t helping, go back and tell them so. And if they don’t take you seriously, see someone else. If something really is wrong, the sooner someone figures out what it is, the better shape you’ll be in. Now pick up that phone and call. Please.


  5. I’m very sorry to hear this. Please give Wild Thing my love, thoughts, prayers, and good vibes that her eyes won’t deteriorate any further and that she’ll at least still be able to document the world through both her human and inanimate lens. <3

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I’m so glad you wrote about this. Even though we SAY we come to read about intercultural mayhem, we are a community gathered around you and WT (and the animals). Thanks for sharing something so personal and troubling. I’m off to read WT’s account.

    Liked by 1 person

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