During the second day, I realized that I was going to have trouble eating. I had experienced some difficulty late during the first day, but I woke up and my lip control had deteriorated a bit more.
Now I had an eye patch. Which looked rakishly adventurous. The patch held a ‘cotton round’ (used by women to apply or remove makeup) that kept my eye lid closed to prevent dry eye. Actually, that was a necessity. Without the patch to keep my eye closed, it was not more than a minute that my eyes would both start tearing up and I’d have to hold my left eye closed with my hand. I began to wonder: if I have to wear a patch for up to several months, what will that do to my vision?
The other part of wearing the patch was the immediate effect: I was now functionally blind in one eye. Very inconvenient. Not only had I lost depth perception, but my right (uncovered) eye is not my dominate one. I did try driving and found I could do it. But I had to borrow technique from my old roommate back in college who once had a job teaching legally blind people how to drive.
Back to eating. I drove myself over to another breakfast appointment and found that I could not eat very nicely so had to figure out how to smoothly slide my bagel around my lips and not bite myself. It was tricky. Drinking coffee was a challenge, as well. I slurped more than I was comfortable with.
At the same time, I realized that my speech was beginning to slightly slur.
OK, this is problematic for a guy who makes his living talking with people, frequently over a meal.
Later that day, that was confirmed as we had a dessert date with another family in the church. This time, cheesecake and coffee. Again, had to angle in the bite of cake so it would get past the unhelpful slack lip and then chew without anything falling out.
Symptoms are getting worse. I did talk during the evening and found my right (unaffected) left facial muscles were getting tired trying to accommodate and pull the other slack side along.
I found that my articulation improved when I took my left hand and pushed my cheek up a bit.
As our hostess was a nurse, she let me know that I would likely have symptoms for several weeks and should make plans now.
Being a pastor who preaches means that I could not, in the immediate future, do my job directly.