Woman who gouged her eyes out while on drugs says: 'I feel like myself again'

Three months after a South Carolina woman made headlines for gouging her eyes out while in a drug-induced high said she was starting to “feel” like herself again.

Kaylee Muthart, 20, of Anderson, S.C., told People she was adapting to her new life following the incident.

“I actually feel like a person. I feel like myself, and I don’t feel like I’m chasing something,” she said. “It, actually, feels really nice. The way it worked out is the way God had it work out, that’s just the way it is… but I’d rather for it to have happened than to still be stuck in that world.”

On Feb. 6, 2018, churchgoers in Anderson County were terrified after they witnessed Muthart removing her eyeballs. At the time of the incident, she said she was hallucinating from a large dose of meth.

Muthart recalled that she thought “someone had to sacrifice something important to the world, and that person was me.”

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“I thought everything would end abruptly, and everyone would die, if I didn't tear out my eyes immediately,” she told Cosmopolitan. ”I don't know how I came to that conclusion, but I felt it was, without doubt, the right, rational thing to do immediately.”

Muthart said the man she had been staying with, who she did not identify but said had a biblical name, was driving by and asked her a question. She said she felt that the encounter was her sign.

What happened next has left Muthart blind.

WARNING: Details below contain graphic material

“So I pushed my thumb, pointer, and middle finger into each eye. I gripped each eyeball, twisted, and pulled until each eye popped out of the socket — it felt like a massive struggle, the hardest thing I ever had to do,” she said. “Because I could no longer see, I don't know if there was blood. But I know the drugs numbed the pain. I'm pretty sure I would have tried to claw right into my brain if a pastor hadn't heard me screaming, ‘I want to see the light!’ — which I don't recall saying — and restrained me.”

She continued: “He later said, when he found me, that I was holding my eyeballs in my hands. I had squished them, although they were somehow still attached to my head.”

Muthart said she went from scoring straight-As in school to doing meth and ecstasy on a regular basis. She said she studied the Bible while high.

“While on ecstasy, I studied the Bible,” Muthart said. “I misinterpreted a lot of it. I convinced myself that meth would bring me even closer to God.”

Her mother, Katy Tompkins, tried to intervene and even recorded a phone conversation between the two of them to get a court order that would force her daughter into a rehab center before the incident.

Muthart said she underwent emergency to “clean her empty orbital sockets” but was now home and recovering. She told People she is about to begin a three-week rehabilitation course to help her with her mobility skills. She is also scheduled to undergo surgery on July 3 that would prepare her to have prosthetic eyes.

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“I’m a very optimistic person, and I went in with an optimistic outlook — but at some points, you’re going to fall down,” Muthart told People. “That’s just life.”

She said she has started learning to play the guitar and piano and has strayed away from drugs. She hopes to attend college and study marine biology.

“There’s definitely something inside of me that wants to say, ‘Well, what else can I do now that I’m blind?’” she said. “But something just cries out deep inside of me, ‘Go for your goal. Do what you’ve always wanted to do. Show everybody that you can do it.’”