Buddy System

I walked into the “little boss’” office yesterday. There was one of my colleagues there and they were talking about me.

In spite of the opinions you may have formed about me thus far, it was good!

My colleague has glaucoma and he is also slowly going blind. Only his is a loss of peripheral vision, not central vision. It turns out all my incessant chatter and complaining about ‘my’ clinical trial had inspired him! My colleague had gone to a day long presentation on glaucoma at Wills. He had been impressed by the presentation and had signed up for a study.

A variety of emotions about this on my part. A little fear he would not benefit from the study and it would be my fault. (I am in control of the universe; you know. And here you thought it was you! ?). A little concern he did not know a few details I consider important. Phase? My colleague did not know clinical trials even had phases! Other details? A little short there. My colleague is going to get me the clinical trial number so I can look it up.

But mostly the emotion was pride. I was proud of him for taking the step. Not only to try to save his own vision but also to try to save the vision of thousands of others.

I was also proud of myself for getting out the information. My colleague would never have entertained the idea of a clinical trial if he had not heard me talk about it first.

I talked about meaning before. Remember Viktor Frankl?  If you have a ‘why’ you can survive any ‘how’. Having a purpose attached to pain, any pain, makes it more tolerable. And that word really is pain, not suffering.

Suffering comes when you resist pain. Having meaning makes suffering less likely.

Anyway, my AMD is having a positive effect in the world. One person at a time. That makes me proud. It also lessens the pain. Attaching meaning to a bad experience does that.

It is kinda cool to now have a fellow future lab rat. We can get t-shirts! Future Lab Rats of America! It could be a club. Wow.

Not sure about timelines but it is possible my colleague can also be my ride to Philly a few times. Our boss was not too sure that would be a good idea. She is half afraid to have two visually impaired staff members venture off into the world together. I am not so sure it would be that bad an idea.

He is peripherally blind and I am centrally blind. Put together we just might be able to have a full field of vision! The buddy system applied to visual impairment……hmmmmm. Very interesting.??

Next: My First 100 Days: Part 1 Hopelessness?

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