Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Freaking Eyeballs

In about 22 years of wearing contacts, I had never lost one down the drain. This is a more amazing statistic if you know I wear rigid gas permeable contacts. These are not gigantic and soft and sticky like soft contacts that cling to your fingers and anything they touch. These are smaller than your iris, hard, and bounce when they hit a hard surface. So I broke a couple, back when I was a teenager, and I lost one or two when they popped out unexpectedly (always when I was rubbing), but I never sent one down the drain.

Then, last year, I dropped one into the sink while I was cleaning it. I always stopper the drain, but you know how hard it is to catch something small in swirling water. It eluded me, sank to the bottom, wedged under the stopper, and kept going.

In sports, when a streak ends, it seems to open up a logjam. Like when you go a long time without a loss, you then have several in a row or 6 out of 8 or something. Well, I apparently broke my streak, because last week, I lost another one. This time, the stopper rose just as the contact slid off the clip/case thing I was putting it in. Stupid freaking stopper.

Hard contacts last for years, so when I get a new pair, I store the old pair for backup. This works out okay, because even if the old pair isn't as strong or is a little scratched, it does fine for the short time before the new one comes in. But either my old contact warped, or my eyeball did. It kept loosening, and then scratching my cornea, so I stopped wearing it.

Luckily, I have some daily wear soft contacts I'd ordered for swimming. I only wear a couple pair a year, so I've had them a while, and they expire this month. So nice timing, right? I don't have to waste them!


1. Soft contacts just don't give the crispness of vision that hard ones do. So I can't see specific numbers on the machines at work from as far away, and I'm squinting more.

No big deal, temporarily speaking, but:

2. These are too big. They slide all over my eyeballs, giving me double vision. I walk around making my eyes super wide--and super creepy--to try to get them to slide into place.

Moisture helps. I always noticed that when I was in the pool or at the beach, they stayed perfect. So I can use eyedrops and that will help.

Not so much...

3. Drops help. For about 3 minutes. then it's double city again. I've gone through half a bottle already (they're small bottles).

Well, at least soft contacts are more comfortable, right?

4. You'd think. But I feel like my eyeballs are cramped all the time.

My last alternative is glasses, and once the sun sets or I'm home for the day, I do switch. But the eyes focus differently for glasses, so I still feel like I'm straining to see, even though the power is perfectly fine. Plus, the corrected vision field is so much smaller, I feel like a horse wearing blinders. And during the day, I can't wear sunglasses, and I really need to.

So the bottom line is that my new contact had better come in pretty damned quick, and I should consider investing in a good backup pair, since I seem to be on a roll.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to call the eye doctor to ask what's taking so *&(% long.


Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Wow, momentum really switched to the other side in your contact game. My one son wears soft contacts and he has almost no trouble.
So regroup and go out there and ... see!

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

It's one of those circumstantial things, I think. I started with the rigid contacts when I was 15 because I had astigmatism, and that was my only option then.

They are SOOOOOOOO much easier to put in and take out, even if I had soft ones that fit, and my vision is SOOOOOOOOO much crisper with the hard ones.

Anyway, I wore those first, so that's what I'm used to, and I don't like the change. Others would have the opposite experience.

And I thought you had more than one son, Sue?

Victoria said...

I can honestly say I have never had an eyeball cramp! lol
I'm with you though. I can't find my glasses and I'm in desperate need of being able to see small print...
New vision insurance is in effect though, so soon.

Natalie J. Damschroder said...

I feel for you! I keep thinking about how much worse it would be if I had nothing to see through.