I only have (half the) eyes for you

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Happy Valentine's!

Last year I spent the day away from my boyfriend, so I'm pretty happy to be with him this year. Not that he ever really agreed to celebrate on the actual day, opposed to its attachment to commercial obligations.
from here
Anyway. In relation to the above title. Recently, there's been some pretty major happenings in my life. One among them being my eyes. I only have half the eyes left but almost double the vision. I've been 'four eyes' since eight, for most of my life. Glasses has been a daily essential, a part of me, especially since my dry eyes rejected contact lenses. There's no longer need for any of that.

My big decisions were around lifestyle changes. Having lived behind glasses for years, I grew up perceived as the stereotypical studious Asian girl. It wasn't the image I particularly enjoyed having, especially as a teenager trying hard to break out of my shell and explore my surroundings. Other times glasses bothered me:

  • wet rain drops blowing sideways on my glasses then leaving marks as they dried,
  • fogged up vision upon entering through the doors on a cold day; awkward hellos and laughters at a gathering. Impatiently waiting for the lenses to adapt to the warmer interior, 
  • fogged up vision, again, bending over a hot bowl of soup,
  • bobbing glasses frames while running; bobbing visions in sync,
  • not being able to read with my head sideways on the pillow,
  • not being able to wear sunnies whenever I want to - prescription sunnies are too expensive,
  • eye makeup not being noticed,
  • eye makeup smudging on the lenses,
  • having to clean my glasses every single morning,
  • and the one that annoyed me the most: the constant sliding of the frames down my flat nose. Half the time my frames block my vision.
I'm pretty sure wearing glasses contributed to my flat nose, though there's no way of proving that assumption. Even now, I sometimes find myself trying to push up glasses back up my nose or take them off, and my fingers are mystified to meet nothing there. Habits die hard. There are times when I liked having glasses or non-perfect eyesight, too. Things I miss:

  • not being able to see the grubbiness of the shower floors
  • all too many used stained band aids in public swimming pools
  • the fashion sense of wearing glasses
But, that's about it.

One day before a long weekend, I went in to be prepped up by the surgeon and nurse. My eyes were tested again, numbed; one side covered while the other clamped open. The bed swung around and raised right under the laser machine. The clamped eye was suctioned still under the green light. As the laser cut the cornea my vision turned white. No longer aware whether I was still looking up as I should, the bed slid from under the machine for the doctor to tweeze the cut piece from a slit of my eyeball. Repeat procedure on the left eye.

All in all, both eyes took about ten minutes each, if not less. A was in the viewing room next to the surgery theatre, following from a screen above, ready to take me home afterwards. Unfortunately cameras were not allowed, to our dismay.

The rest of the day was spent in a curtained off room, behind big dark glasses, trying to sleep. I've been told to rest but when my idea of 'resting' includes reading or blogging or cross stitching.. it's hard. Who knew how much I depended on my eyesight? Only a few hours after the surgery, I could already see past the 20/20 mark. Last line was fuzzy but readable and I'm told that it will only get clearer. For now it feels like I'm wearing super light contacts since my eyes get dry and tired easily, as is normal. Ever so impatient, I hope the objects become sharper and in focus soon.

It wasn't the easiest nor the cheapest decision to get a lasik surgery. But this summer has been one of the most fun, wave catching at nearby beaches on weekends. I don't miss those mornings trying to find clean clothes to wipe glasses, at all. Most mornings, it was a losing battle. I have better things to do. Let the sunnies collection start!

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