May 29, 2011

Keeping Your Eyeball on the Ball

So next Friday I go for the second cataract surgery and if the left eye is any indication of how good my vision will be when they're done after they take the patch off I'll be able to look right through the back of your head.

The difference is astonishing in the eye they've done already; just in general brightness. At work we have these large spools of wire and that wire is transformed into staples that keep the booklets we make together. Out of my new eye the wire on the spool is a bright, sparkling silver. But if I close my left eye and look at it with the eye they haven't done yet it is a dirty, musty gold. And before the operation my right eye was the good one!

It's incredible what you settle for.

It's also amazing how they worked it. I am a guy who has never in his entire life had any surgery of any kind ever done. I've never even had a broken bone that needed setting or anything. I'm also of a weak constitution when it comes to pictures of bloody, squiggly innards. When my wife watches a show where they're doing a real-time surgery or something I depart for the kitchen or elsewhere. I can't watch. I can't even watch when they show operations on animals to save their cute, furry little lives.

So imagine my first surgery. "Oh hai Bob. We're going to give you your very first surgical experience and we're going to CUT OPEN YOUR EYE.


I thought about all the things you'd expect. Knives coming at me. What if I blink? I like blinking. I usually blink when people come close to my eyes. That kind of thing.

But, as you'd expect (I wouldn't because I'm an idiot), my procedure wasn't the very first eye surgery in the world and they've pretty much got this stuff figured out by now. I remember some good drugs going in and the Indian guy numbing the eye, and a nice girl putting a soft strap over my forehead and then some sing-songy person saying "we're going to tilt you back now" and I'm so loopy I'm all "ok. Do whatever you want. Chop off my nose? That's a good idea, I'll just wait here."

There were shapes and dark colors and I imagine that was the start of the operation and the next thing I know I'm sitting in a chair with a patch over my eye and my hand in a bag of Famous Amos Chocolate Chips.

They let me get my head back. I get dressed. Wife takes me home.

The patch is removed next morning. I am completely floored at how good I can see through it. All I can say is - astonishing.

The very worst part of the whole thing is walking around for two weeks with one great eye and one eye that's still all Farco Barnes. It's okay to drive, I focus ahead and the brain shuts off the right eye like "I don't need your shit" but at work it's a bit disconcerting. I have to go up close, arm's length, far away, back to close and so far I haven't come back home once without a raging headache.

I'm making the most of it though. My first day back to work, three days after the operation, I looked at my guys and said "Jesus, you people are ugly." So I got some points there.

Can't wait for Friday, and can't wait for a week from today when the second patch comes off. I've got to do eye drops for a month - three different kinds every six hours, ten minutes apart. Yeah... geez. It's a pain. But the whole thing is worth it. I've worn glasses since I was in 2nd Grade. I'm 57. I didn't even know what I looked like without glasses because whenever I looked in the mirror without them - I couldn't see me!

It's going to be a short transition period. Then I'll probably get some Preparation H to tighten up the saggy bags under my eyes. It's a model's trick. Got to be runway ready y'know...


Gino said...

great to hear it. and yeah, those surgery drugs are the awesomest.

sybil law said...

I drove my friend to her Lasik surgery. They asked me if I wanted to watch it, and I am *not* squeamish, but ewww - surgery on eyeballs is gross. My friend already told me how they went into the pupil or something, like, lifted up the *skin* of it (for lack of a better word), and that made me ill. So anyway, I told them NO - I don't want to watch, and they thought that was really weird. I guess most people watch.

But YAY for new eyeballs and no glasses!!

Tug said...

SO glad it worked so well for you, that's awesome! Will they let you be put out for it? I'm afraid that's the only way I could do it. I used to volunteer in the surgery ward & could watch them, but not on MYSELF. Ew.

Brian said...

Glad to hear this is going well.

I had a bit of a scare with my eyes a couple of years ago (the words "corneal transplant" were actually mentioned at one point) and I couldn't decide what scared me more--the thought of losing my vision or the thought of having my eyeballs operated on.

Hope you enjoy the leaves on the trees!

Faiqa said...

I am terrified of Lasik. I'm glad your surgery went well. I'm sure the Prep H will leave Tyra stunned in admiration. And, no, FTR, I do not watch America's Next Top Model.

RW said...

Gino - I wish I could save some for home.

sybil - I couldn't watch. I just couldn't.

Tug - I conked out last time, and hope to again tomorrow!

Brian - so, what happened??

Faiqa - Yeah, you know, neither do I. I just, you know, KNEW that. Somehow...

Brian said...

Turned out I needed to spend less time in contacts, and quit rubbing my eyes.


(word verification = "hades")

alongfortheride said...

Hope it goes well tomorrow!

I actually came here because of one of your reeeeeally old posts on another blog ( Just wanted to say that, should you change your mind about keeping it, I'd be happy to take that DVD of The Magic Horse off your hands. Recently Netflixed "Stories From My Childhood Vol 2" to get "Ivan and His Magic Pony," but they've completely redone the dubbing and it's, if possible, an even more disappointing experience. Would really like to relive the one I remember from my childhood, even if it also turns out to be disappointing. But nobody seems to be secondhanding it, and $25 is a bit much for something I've been warned will disappoint.

Anyway, I see you've got a lot going on and it's not like you were looking to offload the DVD, hard feelings if you focus on recovering instead of replying. Hope the second surgery goes as well as the first.

(And FTR, I openly enjoyed ANTM regularly for a few seasons. Dignity, what?)

RW said...

alongfortheride - I appreciate the follow-through, but I'll keep it, even in the sad shape it's in. But please stay in touch through the blog or drop me an email some time. Anybody who remembers that series is worth staying up with!

Not a Granny said...

OMG!!! I finally found you again! Not that I blog much any more, but I do read!