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Rocking horse people eat marshmallow pies © Robert Sommers 2017

Friday, October 25, 2013

ayes have it

It should have been as close and apparent as the nose on one's face, which of course, one can not see at all...

I just haven't been all that happy with my new glasses. It was hard to jump back into progressives, about three decades after I gave up on the trifocals. I feel like there is a bit of clarity absent with the new prescription.

I know that this new doctor has some cutting edge technique but maybe this aged milk horse would be better off in something old fashioned and possibly more functional. Why did I switch doctors anyway?  Maybe somebody screwed up...

But I have scratched the crap out of this pair and I can't stare through the clouds for too much longer. Something will have to be done.

I decided that it was time to get my eyes checked again and go back to single vision. I headed down to Escondido the other day and went through the drill with the nice cheerful staff at Dr. Rose's office, getting a multiple battery of tests including blood pressure, near field, wide field, the whole gamut.

Finally I saw Dr. Rose. He started asking me to read the letters on the chart and I started getting irritated. His machine was obviously not set up properly, when I was asked to choose between good and better on my right eye, nothing worked. I could not see either option worth a damn.

"Are you sure that thing is calibrated properly?" I asked.

He said wait a second and grabbed some thigamajig with the flashing lights on the side and looked into my eye. It only took a moment.

"Darn, Robert, you've got a cataract. That's why you can't see clearly." I was in shock. I have had several fleeting vision problems but had chocked them up to this and that and never considered the presence of a cataract. I will be 56 in a week or two, that's too young for a cataract. The idea of a person of my tender age suffering an old person's disease...In my good eye, no less, the one that was always so sharp.

My 15/20 vision has now deteriorated to 20/25 corrected. For a person who relies on his eyes for his livelihood, the news, no matter how correctable, is devastating. I should have listened to my wife, who has long been on my case to wear sunglasses.

Making matters worse, he had told me on my last visit that I had the start of a cataract in my other eye, so it is only a matter of time for that one.

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Although I am not entirely sure that this new malady is self inflicted, it joins a long list of illnesses that definitely were. Anterior cruciate, medial collateral, meniscus, skiing. Other knee, karate. Chronic Active non a non b hepatitis 1973-1975, who knows? Bladder, liver and kidney cancer, poor ventilation and exposure to methyl ethyl ketone and benzene in my not sufficiently ventilated sign shop. Shoulder, Kung Fu and scrapping as a kid. I don't even want to think about the heart attack, the mitral valve failure and murmur was congenital as was the hydroseal, perforated whatchamacallit. I have clearly done a number on my self, probably derives from the Peter Pan complex if not the narcissistic megalomania. Played way too hard. Never thought I would live this long anyway, never gave any thought to a deterioration in old age.

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He says that I have a couple years before I have to deal with it but a part of me wants it fixed right now. Vision is my dominant sense and it aches and is a blow to my soul that it is now so imperfect. The doctor says that there is a really good doctor in Carlsbad. I need to go see him soon.

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Many people get cataracts, the accent mark had hers at fifty. It is a symptom of this horrible, getting older business. It has been a challenging month, that has gone reasonably well, but still this is another weight on the opposing scale that is wreaking a bit of havoc with my internal equilibrium. Not to overstate things but I am going to be cutting things very fine with the shoulder surgery.

To my friends and clients who may be reading this this, I want to publicly thank you for your help, both material and emotional, in keeping the Sommers ship afloat, past and present. Thanks to all of you that make this blog a daily part of your life. Keep sending me stuff that interests you. I will try to post it.


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