Sunday, May 04, 2008

All about my eyeballs

I had a huge Adventure of Eyewear this weekend.

It started when I turned 30 and then almost immediately pulled a muscle in my back and had to shuffle around the apartment with a walking stick and a back brace for the next two weeks feeling really old (I know this doesn't have anything to do with eyewear but I'm getting there). This brought on a sort of low-level panic about the state of my body in general and I scheduled a bunch of doctor's appointments I had been putting off including one at the eye clinic (and another with a dermatologist, but that story is for another day). I went in to a new eye doctor last week that had been recommended and had a really great experience and came out with a new prescription and some new trial contacts.

Now I should back up for a second. I have a really complicated Eyewear Situation. My eyes have three problems, none of which are major by themselves but altogether it is just craziness.

1. I am near sighted, which is a pretty normal problem (my prescription is +3.0).
2. I am also far sighted (I know it's weird to be near sighted AND far sighted but bear with me), meaning that not only are far-away things blurry but I can't focus on things that are close up either, like reading material. Thus I need bifocals for seeing far away and close up.
3. I have a very minor astigmatism (prescription 0.75).

This means that my glasses are usually around $450, and unfortunately there are no contacts that can correct for all three problems at once. I can, however, wear contacts that correct for the near-sightedness and the astigmatism and then wear reading glasses when I need them.

My former eye doctor was not very good so gave me crappy contacts that didn't correct for the astigmatism and then gave me the wrong reading glasses. I gave up almost immediately on the contacts and instead just wore glasses all the time. Also my former eye doctor's clinic had a crappy selection of glasses so I never even really liked the glasses I bought.

This time around things were very different. After my exam, the eye doctor fashioned a pair of tester glasses for me (they looked like crazy-man goggles) and had me walk around the office with them on so he could fine-tune all three of my prescriptions. Then he gave me some contacts I actually really like and the right reading prescription and sent me on my way.

My awesome new contacts, which correct for two of my three eye problems

Instead of picking out glasses at the eye clinic, I went to an artsy private glasswear studio in the funky Fremont neighborhood and had the time of my life browsing their amazing selection of unique and artsy frames with some real help from the staff. I found not just one but a half a dozen glasses that I really liked and then the Studly Hubby and the staff helped me narrow it down to one that I bought. Sidenote: the frames were priced the same as anywhere else even though they were from independent dealers, however the store cuts the lenses themselves so in the end it was a tad more expensive, $500 instead of $450 - but well worth it.

After all that they recommended the most amazing sandwich shop, Paseo, where we had an out-of-this-world sandwich, and then they recommended a good place to buy cheap 'readers' (Anthropologie) where I finally got the right reading glasses. I was feeling pretty lucky so also went to R.E.I. and bought some sunglasses.

My new sunglasses and 'readers', both of which I can finally wear again

Next week I get my new $500 glasses in and can start sporting those around - I will post a picture ASAP. Hopefully this pair will last a little longer since I won't have to wear them every day. Also FYI my fancy new staff eye insurance (vs. old student insurance) paid for about half of this, which was a huge treat.


Sunglasses Guy said...

So those two pairs of sunglasses are also prescription sunglasses? Because most brands don't have prescription glasses that have curved lenses. Apparently it's tough to do.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Josie - just catching up on your recent postings and the length of your posting about eyewear and various vision problems confirms the final tally that you are nerdier than Derek! :)


J-Funk said...

Sunglasses - the sunglasses I showed in the picture are not prescription. I never knew that curved lenses are tough to make. Thanks for stopping by!

HH - Nice to see you here (even if you do think I'm a nerd - you're probably right). Will you be at ASM?

Uncle KT said...

I'm answering for HH (not sure how often she stops by) she will not be at ASM...just me and LC from the lab here. PMS's lab will be represented by KS and MB.

I can't wait to see the fancy prescription glasses!