Today Lola went back to yet another pediatric ophthalmologist…this was now her third. Dr. Zimmer wanted an opinion from Riley Children’s Hospital in hopes to find answers regarding Lola’s low vision. Dr. Zimmer thought the recent MRI results gave no indication as to why Lola would have an impairment. Just as we suspected, Lola’s eyes are healthy. The doctor couldn’t find anything wrong with the structure of Lola’s eyes. His conclusion was that Lola’s lack of eyesight stems from her brain. He thought as Lola’s development improves, her eyesight will as well. But early in the appointment, I explained how much her vision had improved in just the last couple of weeks and I was told that typically does not happen in kids with CVI (cortical visual impairment). While the doctor did say Lola’s low vision was considered CVI, he never really said he thought that was her actual diagnosis. He thought she seemed uninterested to use her vision because she did actually track visual cues most of the time during the exam. I suppose I need to help make life more interesting for Lola to see! He told us to come back in a year for a follow-up, but he stressed again he thought her vision would continue to improve over time.
I must say it is rather remarkable how well Lola is using her eyesight. This weekend, my mother, Lola and I went to Michigan and Lola’s vision seemed drastically better. She would respond to smiles with a smile, she cried when a dog got real close to her face, she would fuss as she saw me walk out of the room and she beamed with excitement when she saw me lying next to her when she woke up every morning. Perhaps these gestures seem small, but they are monumental for our little girl. I really can’t put into words how different her vision is every single day. So even though we had hoped Lola’s vision would be miraculously cured with a pair of glasses today, I’m still quite hopeful as to what Lola’s visual future holds.
I look at these pictures and I’m amazed by what I’m seeing. If you walk around my house, you will see pictures from Lola’s first year of life, but never is she looking at the camera (or even in our direction). Yet now, she sees the camera. She’s looks in my direction. She responds. She may not always, but it’s more often than not these days. Our daughter is seeing something. Does she know what she sees? I don’t know. But she does have a memory. So perhaps if she sees something enough times, she’ll know what it is. Like her pacifier for instance. When I grab her pacifier, she immediately opens her mouth because she knows what it is. Or the milk. When she sees me bring out the big red carton, she knows she is going to get milk. Or even myself. This weekend, when she locked eyes with mine, she would crawl over to me. Or if someone else was holding her, she would look at me and begin to cry because she wanted her mama. These are interactions we never shared before until now. And they are triggered by Lola’s ability to see me. I’m ecstatic by her progress and slightly saddened that I have to go back to work tomorrow after the four days I had off with her. I’ll have more to post soon about our ladies weekend, but for now, I’m off to snuggle with my babe.
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