I paid a visit to an optometrist last Thursday. It's been almost 3 years since my laser eye surgery (which I am VERY happy with btw) and I wanted to know where my eyesight settled.
Nick apparently has near 20/20 vision. He's always able to read signs farther away and words smaller than I. And so, I've long had a clue that laser surgery didn't leave my eyes perfect. Though on that subject, any improvement from -5 or -6 vision (the average glasses wearer is probably in the -2 or -3 range) is an absolute miracle worth paying alot for.
Not having perfect vision but being able to see everything I need to see (without any corrective device) is exactly where I wanted to be. Glasses are something to be hated if you have to wear them daily or fumble with contacts. Relying on eyewear is torture and I particularly hated going to sleep not being able to see much around me once my eyeballs were taken out so to speak. But if you're not blind without 'em it's easy to appreciate them as a cute fashion add-on.
I was expecting and hoping that Mr. Optometrist would give me the awesome diagnosis I wanted, "You don't need eyewear but... I'd recommend a pair for driving... "or something like that. I want to again have the option of framing my eyes from time to time. Though messing with contacts would not be worth the trouble or cost.
As with most Dr appointments, your time is not of the essence and so I waited... and waited. After they did whatever they apparently needed to do--which probably included a cigarette break and a stop at Starbucks--a medical assistant or what-not called me back.
She began asking me questions she would know the answers to if she'd reviewed the 3 pages of paperwork I'd just filled out. I think I was pretty successful in my efforts to remain patient with her despite her taking notes on my answers on the papers where the answers already were.
She left. I peered around. I looked at the blank slate on the back wall where the eye chart is projected. I looked at the mirror on the top right of the front wall that apparently helps the image reflect onto the lower left section of the front wall. I thought hard about how that could work. So mysterious. I peered at the contact solution samples. I fidgeted with my fingers and tapped my feet on the Dr.'s stool sitting next to the elevated exam chair I was in. As I moved my squirmy foot I released a lever on the stool resulting in a somewhat loud metal clang.
Shortly after the clanging, in comes the Dr. I'd forgotten what pervs eye Dr.'s can be. Something about being 2" from your face in the dark does it I guess. Mr. Optometrist asks me if I had trouble checking in. You look stressed he says. I recognize this as a bullshit observation to start things off with me being impressed with his sympathetic super-nice-guy shtick. I try to passify his curiosity on my emotional state by admitting I'm a little impatient. I'm 'A Type' all the way.
I was not the least bit impressed or moved by his attempt to connect with my apparently overtly weary soul. Eye Dr.'s are usually not very clever philanderers I must say. "Let's get those eyes checked out. So you can find a spouse. Easier to meet people if you can see them." he says. I didn't laugh. But I didn't have to fill any silence cuz he quickly followed up with, "Oh, I see. You're married."
I'm gonna call bullshit again. My guess is you'd already noticed my ring but decided on a lame attempt to bait me for a little flirtation. If that works with other women - wow - but the fact that you're personality and observations are predictable and that you look like Bradley Whitford meets John Slattery does not work in your favor.
The Doc goes on to ask me questions about medications I'm on, ya know, questions I wrote the answers to in that darn paperwork I apparently filled out for no one. The subject of medication moves us to the subject of fertility.
"Why are you trying to have kids already?" he says.
"I'm 29." I say.
"Exactly my point." he says.
"I don't wanna be 50 when my kids start their first year in junior high." I say.
"Oh, you don't wanna be like me." He says.
"You haven't started on kids yet?" I say.
"No. I have, but they're babies and I'm almost 50." He says. "But you did say you were impatient."
I go on to ask him how that parental sitch works and whether he feels the kiddos will miss out on his participation. He goes on to tell me that seeing as how he has ample money they are well provided for and have no worries and I go on to tell him that my concerns don't have to do with how much money one has, but rather issues of energy, etc.
By this time he'd pulled his stool up close to mine, ya know so close you can almost feel the doc's nutsack on your knee. Which is obviously the best part of eye exams for us women. Psych. Or Syke, however it's spelled.
I was so grateful to be tested and find that I could read more than 'the big E' on the chart and after trying this or that lens, the test was done.
"You are somewhat nearsighted." he said. "Not at all a bad way to be. When your friends are wearing bifocals, you wont be."
He proceeded to put some sort of numbing drop in my eye (without explaining what it was for) and walked out of the room telling me the MA would be right in.
The MA comes in and says we're gonna head to a darker room so my eyes will dialate. On the journey to the dimly lit room I notice a display of pamphlets titled "Living With One Good Eye." I kid you not. That's what they were titled.
She motions toward a chair and I take a seat across from Ron. A dude on his cell phone who apparently likes to make business calls in the semi-dark. All the while trying to not be overly annoyed by the sub-par version of 'Moon River' playing overhead. In a vibrating voice, "Mooooo ooon riva' I'm crossin uoo uuoo in styyyle..."
Ron, with his Teva sandals and wool socks goes on to finish his convo. Something about how he had to lay off a guy named Shane but wants to bring him back to help him make 60ft metal rings for the Olympics.
About 5 minutes later, wishing I'd picked up that pamphlet for entertainment, she brings me back to the exam room. Then she leaves. Mr Optometrist is back. He does a final check of my eyes--again, his nutsack grazing my knee--and says "Beautiful. There is definitely nothing wrong with your eyes."
By this time I thought we'd solidified that we didn't like each other. Remember, you're the geezer who doesn't give a shit about your kids and Im that no-fun girl who wont respond to your quips.
I said, "So you're saying I don't need glasses?" He says, "No, glasses are exactly what I recommend." And I think to myself, then why did you say there was nothing wrong with my eyes?
Thinking the appointment was about over he decides to tell me that he thinks I was ballsy (yes, I objected to that choice of word given what anatomy was skimming my knee cap) to have gotten laser eye surgery in Hong Kong. Now, you might be thinking he knows what he's talking about being in the field and all, but I assure you this is not the case. Generally speaking American professionals know very little about their respective fields across the world unless they've been exposed to specific case studies.
I told him that I wasn't in fact ballsy unless you're considering that eye surgery anywhere is ballsy. You gotta know the culture I said. There are certain professions in Hong Kong where people are well trained and educated and some where they absolutely aren't. A wide wide pendulum. Its an unpredictable complicated reality you'd only know from living there yourself.
In the end I got the diagnosis I wanted. -.75 in one eye and -1.00 in the other. Thats pretty darn great. The Dr.'s words were exactly what I wanted..."You dont have to wear glasses, but..." I was elated. New glasses! Which I can wear when I want and not wear when I want. He left me for the final time without much fanfare. And I wasted no time leaving.
I quickly made my way to the offices optical shop and scanned walls of mounted frames looking for what would become my new edgy accessory. After trying and re-trying about 20 pairs I asked an employee for help with the selection process. I sat while she watched me model my final 3 picks.
"Oh, definitely not those." she said. "The dark frame makes you look like you have a unibrow."
I thanked her for her honest opinion and proceeded with the other two pairs. In an amazing feat the pair that she loved were the cheapest and I agreed the turquoise trim on those frames looked quite awesome on me. So it was settled and they were ordered. I should get them this week!
I'll close with this, if any of you readers happen to be semi-blind... I whole-heartedly recommend laser eye surgery. It is well worth the money and the 5 minutes of surgery?, well it is surgery, but it is over so quick. And, who doesn't want to visit the optometrist less often. Unless you're one of those other easily impressed girls Mr. Optometrist prefers to have as a patient.