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Kiwi's brush with total darkness

Tuesday 29 Jul 2014 7:13p.m.

Kiwi's brush with total darkness

Imagine being told that you could lose your vision by tomorrow, and then imagine you're away from home, in a new job, and you have no idea if the surgery to save your sight will be successful. 

That was the exact situation faced by Auckland woman Graci Kim shortly after she had moved to Beijing for her new job at the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade. 

During what she thought would be a regular eye check, she received a bombshell. 

At 27 Ms Kim isn't old, but only a few weeks ago she faced a very real possibility that she'd never see again. 

"Everything was going really well, the ophthalmologist was really friendly, we were having a great chat, reading all the letters on the wall," says Ms Kim, but when her doctor looked at her retina, things started to change.

"She sat back and said that my retina in right eye was detached and my retina in the left eye was degenerating, and she said if I didn't get surgery within 24-72 hours I'd go blind." 

She spoke with reporter Lachlan Forsyth about that experience, and what she learned from her time in the dark. 

Watch the full report from Lachlan Forsyth.