Skip to content

Sad state

March 25, 2010

It’s the sad state of my existence that I am visually impaired. Not to the extent that I can’t see and need assistance, thank goodness, but my near-sighted vision can’t be corrected fully to 20/20, which means I spend a lot of my time squinting and guessing as to what things say.

Just to give you an idea of how bad my eyes are:  20/20 is normal vision. If a person has 20/200 vision, that means they have to stand at 20 feet to see something a person with 20/20 vision can see at 200 feet. If your vision cannot be correct to better than 20/200, you are considered to be legally blind. Someone with uncorrected 20/200 vision  can be corrected with a prescription of around -2.5. My vision is corrected at a prescription of -9.5, which means that without my contacts or glasses, I can’t see shit. I’ve only ever met one person in my life who has a worse prescription than me. I win!

Why bring this super fascinating topic up? I just had to adjust the resolution of my computer screen because I have to squint my eyes to read the text, and I constantly have to bring my face to about a foot away from the screen. My whole world just changed! I can see!

Sigh. But I deal.

Mostly I read by recognizing the shapes of words and letters. For example, if I’m trying to read street signs (which I can’t normally read until I’m driving by the actual street), I look for what I think the word should look like, which makes planning my route ahead of time crucial.

I have a tendency to recognize people by their overall shape and by the sound of their voice.

I was walking outside a month or so ago, and heard a voice call out “hello!”. It was the guy I buy my parking pass from. He was about 10 feet away from me, and the only way I recognized him was by his voice.

TV is an issue, and I’m thankful my dad graced me with a 37″  High Def for Christmas last year. Things were getting a little tough with the 32″. B watched year after year as the TV crept closer and closer to the couch when we lived together during university.

My favourite “I can’t see that” moment was when I was watching an old James Bond flick with my parents at their house in Newfoundland. They had an old 15 inch TV mounted up on the wall, and I sat, oh, only about 8 feet away. There was a scene in which the bad guy had an animal on his shoulder. I said to my mom, “Is that a cat”? “No”, she responded, “That’s an iguana”.

The most embarrassing moment was when I was 12 years old and more, ahem, maturely developed, than some of the other girls. A bunch of us were swimming at the complex, and I obviously couldn’t wear my glasses into the water. I was sporting my fancy new two piece bathing suit (you may be able to see where this is going). This was before my fear of heights fully developed, and I decided to go crazy and jump off the high diving board. I plunged into the water, rose to the top and hauled myself out. I felt a cool breeze across my upper body, but looked down and didn’t see anything wrong. Still feeling cool, I patted myself down, only to discover that my bathing suit top had ridden up my chest and my boobalah’s were exposed. Mortification ensued! The colours had all blended together and I didn’t see my exposed self when I looked down. I played dumb, and hoping that everyone else’s vision was messed up like mine, I pulled the top down and pretended that I hadn’t just walked by the cute (I think) lifeguard.

I never jumped off the high dive again.

Laser treatment is an option, but not until my vision stabilizes and stops changing. I also have horrible astigmatism, which at the moment can’t be fully corrected because they don’t make contacts with both the prescription level I need and the astigmatism level I need. If that gets any worse, I’ll need specially made lenses. $$$$. Boo.

But as I said, thankfully my vision is correctable. I’ve heard that pregnancy can improve your vision, and I figure I’ll have to have like 20 kids to make a significant dent. I also need to find a guy to father those kids who has perfect vision to give them a running chance. I’ve also heard that vision can improve with age, so I look forward to that day. Getting older actually has a perk!

So if you ever see me on the street, and I don’t say hi until I’m standing nose to nose with you, don’t be offended!

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: