Poked in the Eye with a Sharp Stick: Grumpy’s Cataract Surgery

Well, despite the fact that my first cataract surgery is done, I’m still blind in one eye and can’t see out of the other. That, of course, is because of the eye shield I’m currently wearing on my operated eye. Here’s a little description of what went down Wednesday, proving you can find humour in anything that happens in your life.



Poked in the Eye with a Sharp Stick:  Grumpy’s Cataract Surgery

Have you ever played Blind Man’s Bluff?cataract

Well I’ve been playing that game all morning here at Tillsonburg Hospital. Yes, today I had cataract surgery #1 –RIGHT EYE –done like dinner.

I had known about the surgery for a couple of weeks so, like any GOOGLE-FANATIC, I decided to be proactive and learn about exactly what was going to be done to me.  I had to understand what cataract surgery was all about. I didn’t want to go in to surgery blind, you see! (Hey, I’m not trying to be PUNNY here!)

What I found was a narrated video of an actual cataract surgery –start to finish.

Well that was a bad move from the get-go, friends, because once I saw the live action video on YouTube, I started to have more than a few second thoughts!

Like how many of those micro probing tools can they shove into your eyeball without doing any major damage? Talk about being poked in the eye with a sharp stick.

All I heard was how the surgeon was going to cut out this, suction that, ultrasound something else, while all at once probing a miniscule incision with various micro tools and sharp objects. I can’t imagine a person with steady enough hands to do that can you?

surgeryGrumpy also has less than fond memories of dissecting that cow eye back in high school biology, swirling around in his head. He remembers that cutting through those tissues seemed like sawing through shoe leather. Pass me the hand saw will you, Bob!

So, you get the picture, Grumpy shot himself in the foot royally and developed some big-time apprehension and a lot of white coat fever. No wonder his pulse was one beat less than 100 and his blood pressure was spiked when the pre-op nurse was getting him prepped. I’m sure he looked like an anxious five year old in those little green booties and not-so-stylish hairnet thing-a-ma-jig.

Anyway, it’s after surgery now and Grumpy doesn’t remember a thing about what happened. For all I know, they probed my right eye ad infinitum.SURGERY 005

That’s because drugs are good and sedation is even better. The nurse kept telling me that, “You’ll be very comfortable during this surgery, sir!” and “Most people sleep through the entire procedure!”

I soon found out that she was right. Surgery is very comfortable when you’re flat out stoned and as high as a kite.


I was told that I would be sedated for this surgery and that I surely was. Upon investigation I found this out.

TWILIGHT ANESTHESIA: This type of anesthesia is used for short, relatively minor medical procedures and is also known as conscious sedation or twilight anesthesia. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you know what’s going on, though — you’ll be sleepy and relaxed. You typically won’t remember the procedure or the short period of time following it.

So, it’s sort of like why I don’t remember a lot about 1969, I guess.

After I woke up in the operating room the surgeon asked, “How do you feel?”

I said, “Oh, wow, what a difference I can see so much better!”

“Well, I’m not so sure you’ll notice that yet, Mr. Grumpy, since your operated eye is covered with a protective shield.”

That’s about the time I burst out laughing and started really craving pepperoni pizza.

They wheeled me into recovery where I was supposed to stay for 30-45 minutes. But as soon as the bed’s wheels stopped turning they brought in my daughter, her spouse and my grandbaby, Ryder. I guess the nurse thought passing over this sniggering old goat to them was the best possible outcome for her.

My daughter said I giggled a lot through the next fifteen minutes. That’s when I had to get dressed. I remember sitting up in the bed while the nurse put on my shoes. I’m sure seven month old Ryder was thinking, “Papa’s a just like me! He needs his mommy to push on his shoes, too.”

I guess my speech was pretty slurred because my daughter said, “You sound like your stoned, Dad!” Well, I can attest to that because that’s exactly how I felt.

The gibberish I was trying to type for text on my cellphone had me correcting every single word about ten times and, of course, I was snickering all the while.

Like this one to the Good Wife:

Owt a surbury fellin purdy got  – seeeee you coon, hoani! Lub you Grimey xoygox

I guess I wouldn’t stop jabbering all the way out to the car and throughout the ride home.

When we got home I couldn’t get my coat off. It seemed as if the zipper was jammed. Just before Grumpy got into curse-mode, my daughter came over to assist. She too burst out laughing.

You see I was wearing a winter coat with a zip up sweat shirt underneath (senior citizen style). I had zipped the underneath wear to the overcoat jamming the unmatched zippers majorly.

snowsuitI felt like a kindergarten kid in a snowsuit as my daughter struggled to release me from my straitjacket. Remembering Robert Munch I wanted to scream, “Hurry teacher, I gotta go pee!”

Later, the great and powerful Oz punished me for that thought. You see I peed on myself twice that day due to the lingering effects of my conscious sedation. No matter, I laughed my ass off at that little faux pas, too.


When you have this type of sedation you are supposed to have 24 hour supervision just in case you have a “conscious sedation” flashback and slip back into unconscious bliss.

Well, that wasn’t quite going to work for Grumpy seeing as the Good Wife had an important Teacher Union meeting after school in Brantford. So, Grumpy came up with this idea.

“I’ll go with you to your meeting, honey. You can just drop me off at the mall and I’ll hang out there.”

Grumpy’s logic was that there would be plenty of supervision there (shoppers, sales clerks, security). If he hit the floor help would arrive in a nanosecond. That’s a win-win situation for anyone post-surgery, right.

The only problem with this public supervision was that the public avoided me like the plague. Everyone took a wide birth when they passed me and most averted their eyes. YouSURGERY 006see with a huge eye-shield taped to my face I looked a lot like that Jason dude from that horror movies series.

The other reason for their distance could have been that I thought it would be funny to talk like a pirate, seeing as I had the prerequisite eye patch.

“AAAAArrrrrgh, me matey.  Tis a fine wind at me back for strollin’”

When I went up to purchase my food at the A and W booth the poor teenage girl couldn’t look at me. Not once.

I’m sure she thought I carried a chainsaw under my coat.

“Thank ye, lassie. Tis great day for a stout root beer, methinks. Shiver me timbers!”

Later as I sat on a bench, I young mother and her five year old strolled by.

The young lad turned to his mother and asked, “Mommy, what happened to the poor SURGERY 008man?”

She whispered, as they both quickened their step, “It’s alright, sweetie. But remember, it’s not polite to stare!”

Believe me, if I had a dollar for every person that did stare that night, I could have had one heck of a shopping spree at the Dollarama.

Later, because I was getting tired of walking and I thought that security cameras might be deeming my behavior as suspicious, I slipped into the book store for a walk-a-bout. I got a great idea there. I would buy a journal and a pen then I’d sit on a bench in the mall and start to write this BLOG. If I passed-out I’d simply slink onto the bench.

That’s about the time the image of a desheveled senior, wearing an eye shield, writing in a notebook whilst staring down with one eye, mumbling like Captain Hook and then slithering down onto a bench – unconscious – stopped me in my tracks.


And so, another great Grumpy idea bit the dust.

Oh well, “Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!” to that!

I’ll leave you with these images of surgery day to ponder and reflect upon. Really, everything went very well and I would recommend this surgery to anyone. The restoration of clear vision is simply amazing.

Well at least I think so. I’ll have a better idea when I can take this damned eye shield off for good!

NEXT UP: I’ll give you the lowdown on post-operative procedures next time around. I did find some humour in all of that double-speak and prescribed rigmarole.

Stay Classy.



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