Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Scarlet Lipstick

I stand at the window with a lump in my throat and watch a great tit dip it's glorious black and white head into the feeder. Bird feeders which no longer blend like a mist into the background of bushes. Instead they now hang clear and proud in their green and silver suits.

A female blackbird bobs along the stone path below - a path that until Wednesday looked like a sea of sand to my cataract misted eyes - and I gaze in wonder as it pecks up a stray seed with its yellow beak... 

As I turn my head I spot a red breasted robin, its chest is as bright as scarlet lipstick. She lands on a branch of our candy floss pink, cherry blossom tree. I stare as she dives at the feeder to snatch a seed to feed her fluffy baby waiting below. 

My feasting eyes stray to our display of tulips which gently sway in the breeze. Mr H planted bag after bag of bulbs last autumn for us to enjoy. The startling pink stand behind the purest red and white I have ever seen.

Tall cups of colourful petals look up towards the grey sky which, to my new eye, is as bright as the Caribbean sun.

Now each morning when I wake my face splits into a huge smile as I watch the white brightness of daylight enter the room. The daylight that has been filtered by my cataracts for so long. 

But the temptation to carry on flirty winking is hard to beat. I have to cover each eye every day to check that my new cataract free eyesight is at least as good as the day before. This cover, check, mantra means that I am reminded of the grey world within which my left eye still lives.

When I read, the words are clearer, and at long last I can read on a deckchair in the garden; the words are no longer clouded from view as soon as my eyes see daylight.  

But reading glasses will be by my side for the rest of my life. My miraculous artificial acrylic lens only gives me distance vision. The lens can't adjust like my own lens used to before I turned 45 when reading glasses became permanently perched on my head.

After a week of rest, my energy bank is topped up and with sunglasses on I test my eyes on a pavement walk. I stride with more confidence as cracks and dips no longer hide from my trippy up view.  

Four times a day I drip drops into my eye which I protect with a patch at night. My calls to Mr H for help are more frequent as I drop things I cannot pick up or have to stop myself from reaching into low drawers. Bending to the ground is forbidden for a while. With military precision I follow the regime for fear that this gift may be lost if I do anything else.

And for now, I tingle with the joy of my new bright world. 

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