In May I got new eyes. Here is the diary I kept on my Facebook Author Page.
Today my eyes get fixed. Elation. The left one first, the right next week. Cataract extraction plus trifocal implants. I'll be bionic. 45 years of terrible vision, corrected in an instant by the surgeon's laser. Unreal. At night my mind ticked over. Not anxious, just active, trying to see the future. Mostly I'm calm. And excited. I'm looking forward to the colours, you see, the stars, seeing underwater and the dust in the sunlight. That and being a cyborg, of course.
The adventure begins. A lovely room to wait in at The McIndoe Centre, kind and caring staff, and a dot above my eye so they laser the correct one. It's the left eye, right?!
It all went really well - looking forward to 20/20 vision this time next week! Loving my new bionic left eye. Colours are brighter, and everything is crisp blue-white. My cataracts gave the world a dull yellow hue. My far and middle distance sight is sharp, and close up improving by the hour (it carries on getting sharper day by day). Resting up today. No pain, just tired after surgery.
I have an eye drop regime for the next 28 days. Then from next Friday -the same for the right eye. No heavy lifting or exercise for three weeks (total). No swimming for five weeks (total). Then I'm free.
Been relaxing and healing. My first full day at the desk today. Still loving the bright colours, the quality of the light, sharp edges. I live thankful. Good distance vision; mid-and near vision not completely sharp yet. Eye healing slowly, takes time... The right eye operation is this Friday.
Top 3 annoying things about having one good eye and one bad one (until this Friday!)
1. Screen work and reading take forever
2. I keep squinting
3. People are both blurry and clear at the same time, which is kind of trippy
Top 3 fantastic things about having one good eye and one bad one (until this Friday!)
1. I can see through my left eye again
2. I can see through my left eye again
3. I can see through my left eye again
Cued up for my right eye operation: dilation drops and anaesthetic in... not long now! And incredibly, such a blessing, I now have 20/20 vision in my corrected left eye. So grateful. I have the family with me today and we are enjoying ourselves way too much!
Just out of surgery. An amazing experience again. The bright lights of the operating theatre became like the sun at the beach after twenty minutes of staring into them. I could see the surgeon's fine tools and hear the laser talking after it did its work. The world became clear as the trifocal lens descended. Ravenous now, slight headache, but lunch has arrived! Oh, and I can see clearly with BOTH eyes now. Overjoyed.
Incredible to be able to see again, and 20/20 is more than wonderful. It's transformational - here's to being able to do readings, videos, and actually read books again!!!
So, still on the subject of eyes - and I promise, I will stop soon, this is for the more technical of you who might be interested. Two pieces of acrylic are now part of my two eyeballs - Carl Zeiss 'AT Lisa' trifocal intraocular lenses. They will probably last longer than my eyes will and have concentric circles with differing magnification strengths.
The eye automatically finds the best one to read: long, middle and short distance, with the brain getting better over time at working it all out. So, theoretically, the vision continues to improve over the months! Clever design, the human body. Me? I'm just ecstatic I can see.
5 things I'm enjoying today with my new bionic eyes
1. 20/20 vision (particularly first thing, waking up)
2. Being able to see in the shower!
3. Blue/white sunlight and the morning sky (mmm)
4. The ability to read books again (hooray!)
5. Seeing a family of yellow birds in a tree (lovely).
Friday, my latest eye check at The McIndoe Centre: healing well and better than 20/20 vision- I didn't even know there was such a thing!
I have a new reading pile now I can see clearly again!
First time back at the gym for a month (after healing from the eye op). Man, it was SO great being able to run without glasses, and see in the shower... Trying to up my mileage bit by bit.
Final thoughts. I am still enjoying excellent vision. My new eyes have enabled me to finish writing the fifth 5fingers book with ease, which is out in spring 2018 . With a Middle Eastern book tour due next spring, and a full schedule of author visits, I will be able to read confidently in public, wear sunglasses and go in the sea. Thank you Damian Lake and the team at The McIndoe Centre!
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Joshua Raven, novelist. Read about my writing and my life here. And have you discovered 5fingers yet?