My nut in a dayshell
I’m blind without my glasses. Literally 20/400.
If a cardboard eye chart is used and I’m asked, “What do you see?”
I reply, “A bunch of grey fuzz on white.”
If it’s one that has back lighting, my reply is, “Light. Lots and lots of painful light,” an experience that is always followed by a rather pesky migraine and a prescription pill.
20/200 is legal blindness. It means that a person has to stand 20 feet away to see what someone else can see 200 feet away.
<— If my glasses didn’t have a dark tint, this is what’s you’d see…sans the cat.
If my 20 pound coon cat stood on my head he’d look like a bizarre wig, with his back feet on one shoulder and front feet on the other. That, too, would probably give me a migraine.
When I was in elementary school, I memorized O F L C 3. Every year, all students had to take a 30 second eye test. I sort of saw a fuzzy, giant, E but rattled off the line for 20/20. In Junior High, the nurses were smarter. One asked me to read the line above it.
For the first 12 years, my world looked like this. It’s why my way of looking at the world revolves around color, not form.
Today was “NUTS DAY.” The day I know I’m going to have a migraine whether I want one or not.
Another name for this day is the yearly eye appointment. One that was almost a year overdue.
I am very, very fortunate to have an optometrist who listens. We passed the room full of light-pain machines and went right for the examination.
I can’t have my eyes dilated — the prescription will always be wrong. I can’t look into machines with bright lights before an eye exam. The migraine hits too soon. Doing it afterward is no better. I can’t keep my eyes open for two seconds.
It took him an hour, and a bunch of loose lenses held up to my glasses, but I’m confident the new pair of glasses MIGHT be right. I can’t be sure until I start walking around with them. Moving the head has, in the past, changed a great possibility into stomach wrenching vertigo.
I’m sure you’re wondering why he didn’t use this
instead of this
In a nutshell: The refraction contraption doesn’t work on me.
My eye doctor has to build a new pair of glasses using my old pair that are still on my face during the entire exam.
I hold the blinder thingy to one eye while he puts a lens over the other, and I look at a sign propped up on the floor (right under the backlit sign which he had turned off before I walked into the room).
Being different is not always a good thing. Most people can go to the eye doctor, get a prescription, and leave. My glasses have to be absolutely spot-on. I can tell the subtle differences between lens position so well that when my optometrist puts the same lens in front of me again a few minutes later, I say the same thing (no, worse, better, almost…).
He did this for lens diopter (optical power), astigmatism and prisim. Then, at the end, he put lenses over both eyes. The lens on the left had to have a bit less diopter for my eyes to work together.
If you’re not familiar with “astigmatism,” my eyes bend the image so a street light looks like silent shell burst fireworks
The prisim is to correct the fact that one eye is rotated out a little, and the other eye is rotated up a little.
Without the right glasses, it looks a lot like this, only the background image is slightly higher
The next hurdle is the lab. There will be a notice on the order that says, THIS HAS TO BE ABSOLUTELY PERFECT…and the lab will ignore it because the law allows for a bit of leeway.
To my eyes, “leeway” is another word for “causeway.”
Most people don’t notice, but to me it might as well be a chasm, one that makes it necessary to take several painful months to get used to a new pair of glasses. I have to wear them a few minutes and then change into my old glasses. The next day, I wear them a few minutes more, until I’m up to an hour…then two…then three, until I can wear them during the workday.
It is by sheer luck that any of my glasses are right the first time.
That was my nut in a dayshell.
Now, if he could only do something about the dyslexia, I’d be yrev yppah.