Was Blind But Now I See

After decades of glasses and contact lenses, I got the news that I had cataracts.

Naturally I was horrified, imagining life as a blind old lady, stumbling around and crying out in a weak little bird squawk.

Instead, I learned that I could have the cataracts removed and replaced by tiny lenses that would improve my vision to nearly 20-20! Jesus Christ! Why don’t people go around praying for cataracts?!? Without contact lenses, my vision was 20-700, meaning I couldn’t see my own feet, let alone anything else.

I’m not brave about surgery, not at all. The word is fraught with dread and unpleasant flashbacks to past injuries. But the idea of seeing clearly was like discovering I could fly. I was eager to do it. Until the actual week of the first surgery. Then I freaked out.

Want to hear about the surgery? Probably not, right? So skip this part. You go to the surgery place and they put you in a room until your boredom creates a kind of stupor. Then, they stick a needle in your arm for an IV. They put your hair in a cap and ask a bunch of questions. The nurses are all perky and happy to talk about nail polish and tattoos. So then you relax. Then they wheel you into the operating room and start the opiates.

You tell the anesthesiologist that you’re not stoned enough. He says, “Well, this is as stoned as you’re gonna get,” in a bossy tone. But he holds your hand.

Then, they transfer you to another table and fit a thing over your eye that keeps it open.

You know what, I’ll stop there, in case you’re thinking of having eye surgery. I don’t want you to worry about how disturbing it is.

But when it’s all over, it’s fantastic! They tell you how great it went and you go home with a bunch of eye drops, and in a few weeks, you go back to do the other eye.

Seeing is so incredible, I can’t really describe it. When I leave the house, it’s like I’m taking my eyes out to see the world. The detail! The colors! I had no idea how bright my own face is. It’s magical.

When I wake up, I can see the clock! I can see all the ships in the harbor across the street, instead of just a big harbory blob.

I plan to take my eyes to LACMA. I also plan to wear a ton of eye make-up.

I should point out that this procedure isn’t cheap. It’s so costly, in fact, that I’ve decided I have to keep living for at lest two years, to offset the expense, sort of. Otherwise, my family will go, “After spending all that money?!?”

So if you were worrying about me, relax. Until 2019, anyway.

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10 Responses to Was Blind But Now I See

  1. Dj says:

    I had both removed years ago, love my 20/20 vision! I do wear glasses occasionally to have super crisp vision, but normally ok……..no sweat!

  2. David Duff says:

    As the Archbishop of Canterbury never said, “And the Lord said let there be light – and lo – you could see all them fuckin’ sinners!”

  3. Mary Liz says:

    Well, I was kind of worried about you…someone I’ve never met but who makes me laugh out loud, feel so bad, think about world events, someone with whom I’m in complete agreement about he who shall not be named. Glad that the world is new and bright for you! Please stick around for many more years!

  4. Kelly says:

    I had mine done when I hit 50, after taking a baseball to the chest that I didn’t see coming. It is pretty incredible. To be honest I don’t remember the actual surgery moves I was too busy talking to the doctor in my woozy state. No pain anyway. Good for you! Make sure to wear quality sunglasses(retail therapy for your recovery) for life.

  5. Miranda Mitsouko says:

    I have been praying for cataracts for years… Congratulations!!!!

  6. Bevitron says:

    I’m happy to hear that you’re enjoying your new refurbished eyeballs! I’ve got the 20/800 vision thing going on myself, and I’m finding out now that I have cataracts and a touch of glaucoma, and of course the massive, annoying floaters that threaten my sanity.
    It’s good to know that the cataract surgery is so fine-tuned these days that you get it done and go home, boom. And, the idea of never having to fuck around with contact lenses or wear Coke-bottle glasses again is kind of thrilling, but, still…I don’t know.

    One thing about my crappy vision that I’ve always liked – felt smug about, even – is that I can be kind of blind when I want to be. Doing my nightly reading in bed, glasses off and book 4 inches from my nose, there are no distractions in the distance – my world is reduced to what’s right around my head. And when I wake up, the world isn’t there until the glasses make it be there. Kind of childish, huh.

    That sharp, super-crisp vision does sound sweet, though. But I’d still have the damn floaters and I don’t think they’ve got floater removal out of the long and painful stage yet, have they?

  7. Dj says:

    Floaters can be eliminated! Before I had my cataracts removed in 2000 I asked my dr if there would be a fix for floaters in my lifetime and he said “I can do it tomorrow!”. I burst into tears and fell in love., it’s not a difficult procedure, but go to a retina specialist. It changed everything!

  8. Charlotte K says:

    No cataracts yet for me, but I remember as if it were yesterday receiving my first pair of glasses at age 10. I exclaimed loudly the entire way home in the car–“I can see every leaf! I can see every pebble! I can see grains of sand” Could never forget that!!

  9. Bevitron says:

    Dj, that is exciting news about the floaters!
    Thank you!!

  10. Suspended says:

    Looks horrific but the results sound wonderful. x

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