Well 20+ years of contemplation, investigation and general parping I am finally sat here typing this sans glasses!!!
I have worn glasses since I was twelve and those of you from the UK will know the pain of the pink NHS plastic glasses issued to those who couldn’t afford/ weren’t prepared to pay the extra for any glasses that looked remotely cool:
Delightful aren’t they?
I knew we weren’t well off (at all) but I did really hate those glasses and yes I did suffer the usual ‘four eyes’ jokes.
Of course now I’m a parent I can totally understand why my mum was reluctant to pay the extra when my prescription was changing twice a year and I did have a tendency to loose/sit on them!!
So when this new fangled laser eye surgery came into existence I thought my saviour had arrived – no more glasses!!!!!
However back then it was a developing science and ignoring the fact that I definitely couldn’t afford it I started to look into whether it was feasible… the short answer being – No.
This was due to the fact the my poor eyesight is largely down to having an astigmatisms which back then was untreatable. I treat this as a sign, on the basis that I couldn’t afford it anyway and carried on with life…
About ten or fifteen years later my little brother has his eyes lasered – it’s brilliant! He’s a convert – I literally hear about nothing else…
Naturally I start to look into it again (I am now sporting glasses that are quite nice so I don’t mind wearing them but I would still rather not).
I discover they can now do my prescription! However I still still can’t afford it so start looking down the contacts route instead – you can now get weighted contacts, but they’re hard ones and extremely uncomfortable… I stick with glasses… I buy a designer pair… I sit on them… my mother really did know what she was doing.
A few years later my hairdresser has her eyes ‘done’ she has the same prescription as me… it is very tempting… I’m now on toric soft daily disposable contacts but my vision isn’t as good as glasses as they ‘swing’ whenever I blink so that everything goes a bit blurry, but they’re good for a night out.
I look more at the side affects as I’m an artist in my spare time now and I do love my art, ridiculously so, (feel free to check out my work on FaceBook / website – the website needs updating, it’s on my ‘to do’ list along with several hundred other things – let me know what you think) my eyes are naturally dry so I’m concerned about extra dryness but I’m also terrified about losing my sight, after all it’s just cosmetic, I can see perfectly fine with my glasses (I’m now on ones the you can sit on and they spring back into shape – genius!).
Fast forward another five years… I should probably warn you about the length of this blog – but it does span 20+ years!
I am on secondment in the USA and my son has just has his eyes lasered, he is also a total convert and one that knows I’ve been looking into it far his entire life so I hear everything and basically I should “JDI Mother!”
I take this on board and look at the advancements that have been made, along with the cost – it’s not cheap the £250 per eye is basically bol***ks – I’m an accountant by original trade and I’ve been borderline (and occasionally well over the border) broke for most of my life and so frivolous spending is not on my agenda, however, over the last few years, things have become easier. But old habits die hard and to be honest I’m glad.
So I look at the price I pay for my designer glasses, my occasional contacts etc. compare it to the fact that I have dents in my head and nose thanks to the glasses, the issue re sunglasses (esp. now we live somewhere that sees the sun more than twice a year!) and the poo bag issue…
It’s still a lot of money with a long pay back period… I research what’s around locally and how much… I imagine on the basis that everything except petrol (gas) in the USA is TONS more expensive than the UK that it will be a decision for when we return to the UK.
I found a place in Connecticut called Liberty Vision in Hamden – they have excellent reviews – better than others, I do believe reviews are an excellent first check, make sure you look at recent reviews and see if they are ‘confirmed’ customers where applicable. They seem good and they do the latest surgery techniques that involve 6300 individual readings of each eye to customise the treatment.
The cost is comparable to the cost in the UK in fact to my surprise it’s slightly cheaper!!! I know!!!
It’s Christmas so as I’m with my son and also seeing my brother I interrogate the pair of them on the finer details… I’m on the verge of a decision… I still can’t really afford it but I do have an empty credit card… so I am considering it…
I would like to point out at this point that I truly believe that you should not put something that is not absolutely necessary on credit!!!!! I know I’m the worlds worst on this but now I’m free of the debt I would totally recommend never getting into it again. EVER. I cease considering it again.
Shortly after Christmas I come into some money – a small inheritance (not so small for me!) which could either get me an electric harp when we return to the UK or… it could… possibly… I book an appointment to see Dr Gold!!!
I have the free consultation – it’s very thorough and I’m very impressed with Dr Gold, he is reassuring and doesn’t sugar coat the procedure which I appreciate, he also instantly gave me a feeling of trust which is so important.
I book in for the ‘Op’ at the next available slot – if I think about this much longer I’ll have died of old age!
So… E Day!!
I am so excited/nervous/terrified!!!
During the procedure you’re given a bear called Seymour (see-more, I wasn’t in a ‘laughing at jokes’ place but did appreciate the humour) to hold – this is to stop you from trying to wipe your eye – I felt a bit sorry for Seymour, i don’t know how other people hold him but I nearly decapitated the poor thing!
The ‘procedure’ is not pleasant, at all. However it is over very quickly.
It really is very unpleasant – did I mention that?
I had the procedure where they remove the top layer of your eye and then laser it (don’t worry I was reassured this layer grows back in about three days) rather than the one where they cut a flap on your eye, lift that up and then laser – the recovery time for the ‘flap’ one is much quicker however the cut never heals… I didn’t like the sound of that – neither did Dr Gold who doesn’t operate that procedure at all.
My wonderful husband was able to video the procedure from an adjoining room where he got to watch the camera on the laser machine! He has the video and I did consider posting it here but it is a bit grim… I’m glad I couldn’t see it! So instead this is my eye being lasered!
As soon as it’s finished (which i am exceedingly glad about! It doesn’t hurt but it’s not nice) I notice the clock on the wall which I couldn’t read before – it’s 10:25!!!! The whole thing took ten minutes and i can see!!!!
My eye’s are sore, actually very sore, which is to be expected – there are a lot of instructions which boy am I going to follow!!!
But I think I can rock this laser look!
One week later – no protective lenses, drops every few hours and i can see better than I could with glasses, I was even able to wear make-up again and you have no idea how much easier it is when you can actually see (although I think I do need more practice).
There is one downside… it appears my bathroom needs a damn good clean!