The Children’s Glaucoma Foundation means many things to me, but most importantly, it means hope. Hope that one day children’s glaucoma will no longer be the leading cause of blindness in children. Hope that through research and breakthroughs in medicine, one day a cure will be found.
I was born with cataracts and had about ten surgeries before the age of one, which ultimately saved my eyesight. While I am beyond lucky to have the vision that I do, I do have a visual impairment. At about the age of ten, I was diagnosed with glaucoma, and personally didn’t understand the seriousness of it. I understood that it could cause permanent vision loss and blindness, however I always thought it wouldn’t be me. I’ve had amazing medical care my entire life and always thought my vision will be fine.
Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, and even with amazing doctors my eye pressure was too high. If it continued that way, permanent damage would have be caused. That is when Dr. David Walton came into my life. My mom told me to expect a two hour appointment because he wants to get to know his patients, and she was right! Dr. Walton is a kind, compassionate man who truly cares about his patients and their well-being. He puts his patients first and goes above and beyond to deliver the best possible care.
The scary part about childhood glaucoma is that it is known as a silent disease, meaning there are little to no side effects of high eye pressure. If awareness about childhood glaucoma isn’t spread, a parent may have no idea that their child is suffering with the disease. With the Children’s Glaucoma Foundation, I am hopeful that raising awareness and increased research will keep finding a cure in sight.
With your purchase of the You Are My Sunshine Charm Bangle or Expandable Necklace, you are supporting the Children’s Glaucoma Fund’s mission of influencing the quality of glaucoma care throughout the world through continued research, physician training and support, and assistance to affected families. Together, we can make a difference.
Written by Kathleen Smith, Glaucoma Patient, Advocate, and Children’s Glaucoma Foundation Supporter