Decided: The Eyes Will Have It

English: A typical Snellen chart. Originally d...

English: A typical Snellen chart. Originally developed by Dutch ophthalmologist Herman Snellen in 1862, to estimate visual acuity. When printed out at this size, the E on line one will be 88.7 mm (3.5 inches) tall and when viewed at a distance of 20 ft (= 609.6 centimeters, or 6.09600 meters), you can estimate your eyesight based on the smallest line you can read. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


It’s been one of those ideas that I’ve kicked around for several years. I’ve alternated between fear, lack of funds, and just plain feeling like the status quo is OK.


But over the weekend, it changed. A good friend and I had a long talk. Our conversation meandered through life, food, family, work – and eyesight. Specifically my poor eyesight. I’m not disabled by my eyes, but I am handicapped by them. I have severe nearsightedness, some farsighted issues, astigmatism and cataracts. There are things I’d like to do, but cannot because wearing glasses is a hindrance, but not wearing them would be dangerous.


My friend asked me if it was a money issue that stopped me from having surgery. Nope, I now have that taken care of. Worry about stepping away from my usual activities during healing? Well, a bit, but we’re talking about a few days to a week; not a lot of time. So what’s the deal? Why not get it done?


Anxiety over the change. I’ve worn glasses for half a century; I was just barely able to read the eye chart when the grownups around me realized I couldn’t. The frames of my first pair of glasses were octagonal in shape and green in color. Very mod for the era, but not something you’d want your five-year-old wearing now, unless you wanted them to get beat up on the playground.  I admit that I am used to seeing my world through a frame.


Worry about the “what ifs.” Research indicates very few side effects and things that go wrong with vision correction eye surgeries these days. And it’s not that any of us wants to invite trouble onto ourselves; we just seem to be hardwired to think the worst case scenario will be our scenario.


Spending the money. It’s there, but then again, there are plenty of other (and maybe) wiser ways to spend it. It’s easy to guilt yourself into or out of spending money on something, if you can think of an even remotely better reason to spend it.


I made the pre-op appointment. It’s two weeks away. Don’t ask me if I’m nervous or excited yet. I’m still in the fantasy stage: thinking about what life will look like in a few months.





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