Community Views: Gratitude
“Whoa, what does Macular Degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss for people over 60, have to do with gratitude?” “What am I to be grateful for?”
Things we are grateful for
Turns out that there is a lot as the members of our online community told us. We asked the members of our Facebook group and the subscribers to MacularDegeneration.net to tell us what they are thankful for, for what, or whom they have a feeling of appreciation or thanks.
Specifically, we asked: "When it comes to handling macular degeneration, I am most grateful for ___________ (fill in the blank)."
My retina specialist!
“My wonderful retina specialist who gives me injections in both eyes each month…."
More than half of the people who answered our survey praised their doctor.
One of you cited the doctor’s “help and information.” Another responded that their doctor was “not only good with the shots, but also very willing to talk with me about anything!” “My retina specialist is the best…” declared a third.
“He's not just smart that's what I called gifted intelligence he's extremely thorough and precise excellent at everything he does. He's the type of doctor who earns an A+ and thinks he could have done better.”
A good relationship with your retina specialist is something everyone wants. While there are often complaints, it is good to hear that people are also having positive experiences. The RS is an important part of everyone’s journey with macular degeneration.
Scientific research and development
Many of you mentioned the anti-VEGF injections for wet macular degeneration and continuing research on new treatments.
“That research has led to [the] development of tomography leading to treatment by injection for wet macular generation,” one of you replied.
One person even mentioned the particular drug used by their specialist, “Eyelea Injections!”
“I don’t like eye shots, but I’m very thankful they keep my eyes stable!” That was your consensus.
After talking about her Retina Specialist one person added, “So very thankful those injections exist.”
Husbands, friends, and family received special mention. “Having a husband to support you is wonderful. He has picked up the slack on things I don’t see well enough to do anymore, like driving at night.”
For several people, it was simply, “friends and family.” It is easy to imagine what was behind such a response. Rides to the doctor. Someone to talk with when life seems tough. A better set of eyes for checking out labels at the grocery store. A hug. Understanding when you need to borrow a flashlight at the restaurant.
All they do to make you feel that you are more than this disease.
Modesty will be put aside while we acknowledge those of you who cited this Facebook page and our newsletter. “This Facebook group ranks high on my list when it comes to macular degeneration. Without a doubt, I have learned more here than in the doctor’s office. The bonus is that I also have the support of others that 'get it'!”
“[The] vision I still have and the people on this site,” answered someone else.
A Higher Power
“God” was one person’s reply.
I’ll admit that since being diagnosed with wet AMD more than two years ago, I am developing a new understanding of the idea of grace, that unmerited divine assistance given to humans.
Somehow, I have found support, understanding, and an opportunity to use my talent for writing at MacularDegeneration.net. I’ve developed a keen interest in the science behind my disease and the new treatments researchers have in development. And I have been given the grace to be open about this condition and help others. For that and my doctor and my husband and my friends and all those researchers, I have the utmost gratitude.
Do you feel that you've maintained independence with macular degeneration?