Sunday, November 4

Technicolour dream

This post is not going to have much crafting content, so advanced notice! Please feel free to skip it.

My eye sight has been getting gradually worse for, well, I don't know how long. I suppose it would be a slow process, over many years - and because it's gradual, you don't notice that detail is gradually slipping away from you, bit by tiny bit. My father had cataracts - he had the first one removed on the NHS when he was 45. If his ran the same course that mine did, he would have been almost blind in that eye by then - somewhat sobering, when you realise that at the time he was the only driver in our family (my mother didn't pass her test until her late 40s). His sister also had them, and hers were done age 55.  It turns out my great grandfather had them - so it must have skipped a generation. In July, my optician suggested it was time I was referred for treatment, as my prescription had suddenly shot up to 1.5 (from 0.5) and spectacles were just holding back the eyestrain headaches, the eyesight wasn't improved by wearing them. I'm 40. There were some shenaningans with the private health insurance people, and after wasting six weeks I decided that getting it done in London would be easiest, plus it also offered the option of a multi-focal lens that I wouldn't get anywhere else.

Fast-forward to Friday, and I had my left eye's lens replaced. I had it done privately - I'm fairly sure I would have been involved in a road accident, had I waited another five years for the NHS (presuming they didn't fast forward me because of my age). I nearly back-ended a lorry on the M1 on Thursday, because I couldn't make out that it was, in fact, a lorry, until he was in my headlights - and that's not far away at all at 70mph. Almost gave myself a heart attack when I realised. There was a near miss with a cyclist and a near miss when I nearly stepped into oncoming traffic. This "waiting until they're ripe" crap? I wonder how many road accidents could be prevented every year! I got used to not being able to read newspapers, the small print on food, and not being able to distinguish anything at a distance.

We got down to London without incident. The anesthetic part wasn't fun - I could feel poking around my eyeball - but it was momentary. The surgery was rather trippy - it was like looking up through water at the surgeon. The surgery took about 10 minutes. Had to wear the eye bandage until 8.30pm, when I could take it off and apply the first of a fortnight's worth of eye drops.

Oh, my, word. The colours! The shadows! The edges! Apart from having a massive pupil, and apart from it being a little bloodshot, the eye looked fine - no obvious trauma. My brain though? Screaming, where did all this colour come from?! Why did nobody tell me?! It's been one amazing trip ever since. I can see blacks as blacks, not greys. Reds and burgundies are rich. Whites are white, not cream. It is like one psychedelic trip, just watching the tv. I've never seen the Cog's tv with good eyes. The gloves I was wearing (I machine-knitted them at a show) - not the colour I thought they were. I think I'm starting to annoy the Cog because I keep going "oh wow!". It's fantastic, and now I can't believe (a) how bad the "good" eye really is. The optician says the new eye is actually better than 20/20 now (had to go back to Harley St to check all was healing correctly). Took my brain an hour or two, and already it's letting the left dominate and is ignoring the cloudy right.

I'm off again on Friday to get the next one done and now I can't wait. It's the best present I've ever given myself and it was so worth it. The left eye feels a little sore - somewhat bruised - but it's minor and it'll go. I have to wear a plastic eye shield at night, and I have to take a course of 3 different drops, 5 minutes apart, four times a day, for the next fortnight. I have to avoid getting water or anything in the left eye for fear of infection - no swimming, no heavy lifting, and no eye make-up (but I don't tend to wear make-up much anyway). It's tricky sleeping with something stuck on my face but it's temporary.

Craft-wise I've finished the Sweet Pea shawl but I'm planning on adding a lovely crochet border - I just need to decide what I want to add. I'm also crocheting a parrot head for a friend's Mary Poppins costume. Knitting is somewhat stalled - I need to frog some things and regroup. I do intend to knit the second estonian spiral sock, but I guess I've been waiting until I could see what I was doing.

Yesterday the weather was fine and cold, a perfect day to appreciate the autumn colours and the clouds in the sky. Today it's grey and wet, and I'm enjoying staying indoors and relaxing, whilst himself watches the Grand Prix.

Current mood: happy

1 comment:

Mary Beth said...

Congratulations!!! My husband had this done when he was 50 or so and it totally changed his life, too. I'm so happy for you.