cranky contacts

the only good thing about the cold weather snap that hit town on thursday is that my eyes finally settled down.

i wear disposable contacts, and have for years. most of the time, i am perfectly content with them. i like that i have minimal fuss and muss: i pop them in first thing in the morning and don’t take them out until 27 seconds before i go to bed (i am as blind as the proverbial bat if my eyes are au naturel).

i will be eternally grateful to whoever invented contacts (why is this person not as famous as thomas edison and the lightbulb??!). i first got eye glasses in grade four. i tolerated them, but felt very self-conscious about wearing glasses, and also did not like the weight on my nose, or the way they got spotted with drops when it rained. i remember wanting to get contacts as early as grade five. jackie calvert in grade six had them, why couldn’t i?! but my dear eye doc (wonderful dr white) forbid contacts until i was fifteen. i clearly recall that i got my first pair of soft contact lenses in the fall of grade ten. oh, happy day! and i’ve worn contacts ever since.

over the years, i’ve mainly stayed with soft contacts although there was a brief interlude where i wore the gas permeable type. i’ve worn disposable/soft contacts for at least 10-15 years, now, and have no plans to do anything else.

loyal to the brand

but what about laser surgery, you ask?? i know several people (ex: gina!) who have gone this route, and while they are all success stories, this option is just not for me. as the brother says, “it’s lasers! it’s your eyes!” so far, i have been unable to wrap my head around taking that chance, even though the thought of waking up in the morning and actually being able to see is extremely enticing.

i do have a backup pair of glasses:

i could not see as i snapped this pic as i already had my contacts in, too! whoa, blurriness!

however, i only wear these once in a blue moon – like, if i’m sick. never out in public. actually, the prescription of them is quite outdated, so they’re not all that clear! and because the lens area is pretty small, i have a window of clarity framed by fuzziness.

anyway…back to the current situation! around the end of august, my contacts really started to bug me. they felt cloudy, itchy, were riding up and down in my eyes…very annoying. not to mention, i looked like i was smelling something rotten or was in a very pissy mood as i squinted and peered through scrunched up eyes:

a re-enactment

i chalk it up to the “gunk” in the air – allergies seemed to be flaring up among friends and family, so i think that’s what was affecting me. [in aruba, i also have contact difficulties – i’ve had to wear glasses there – or put in a new pair of contacts every two days – because the discomfort of my contacts was just too great; i am thinking it is the sand and salt particles in the air that are to blame].

for right now, the easy solution, of course, is just to put in a new pair of contacts. however, i am in a rationing position, these days: i have eight sets of disposables left, and have to get through ’til the middle of december if i want insurance to cover the next batch that i order. which i do!

i finally gave in, though, and popped in a new pair early last week. ah, relief! clear vision and normal-feeling eyes! to help keep the contacts as comfy as possible for as long as possible, i stopped wearing mascara and eye shadow (i think little specks and flakes get in my eyes, sometimes) as an experiment. so far so good!

what’s your vision situation? and would you ever consider laser surgery? my left eye is considerably weaker than my right eye.

question: i wonder if they could make these into prescription glasses?

the beloved if ridiculous "kiki harrharrwoods"

that would be a great signature look, eh?!

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  • Gina Unger  On September 20, 2011 at 4:03 pm

    I LOVE that I got laser eye surgery. yep. I know you know. But I’d do it again in the blink of an eye (no pun intended?!) I definitely got a bit freaked out the night before the surgery – imagining myself blind afterwards – BUT they’ve been doing the surgery for eons and I still have not heard of even one total failure or blindness as a result. I went to Herzig in Toronto. It took about 30 seconds per eye to make me see without help. Too easy! It’s changed my life forever and I completely encourage anyone who is a candidate to do it, too.
    LOVE your sunglasses – every time you post that picture I get the giggles. But in a good way! You look fabulous in them! And I totally thought you were wearing a hat until I looked closer. Now you have to find a hat like that for sure!

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 20, 2011 at 4:41 pm

      oh, i’m so glad you saw this pst, g! i was totally thinking of you when i wrote it up! 30 seconds per eye – thanks! i had no idea how long it took to zap each eye. i KNOW that you’ve been THRILLED with your surgery. i DO have to find prescription glasses with BIG BLACK frames!! πŸ™‚ now THAT would make me smile to wear glasses!

  • The Orchard  On September 19, 2011 at 8:54 pm

    I love that look with the sunglasses! It almost looks like you are wearing a hat, too.

    I used to wear contacts and loved them, but my eyes started to really bother me so I went back to glasses. I am not crazy about my glasses either so for the most part I wear nothing (I just wear glasses for driving or TV watching). Oddly enough, the last time 2 times that I went to the eye doc he said that my eye sight has improved! I guess my NOT wearing glasses has helped!

    I would like to wear contacts when I go running, especially when it is dark. I am just too lazy and cheap to go out and get them right now!

    And no, I would never consider laser eye surgery. It freaks me out too much!


    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 8:58 pm

      my eye doc told me if you’re shortsighted, your eyesight can improve as you get older! i like your explanation (not wearing glasses) better!

  • Nicole  On September 19, 2011 at 8:42 pm

    I’m blind too- very blind. But….! I feel very self-conscious without my glasses. I owned contacts, once, in University but, I couldn’t get used to them. I love being able to wear cool/hip/stylish glasses and switch them up every two years. Needless to say, there’s not a chance in heck that I would get laser eye surgery. I think you should get yourself a funky pair of eye glasses so that you could be “seen” out in public with them if need be. By the way, my allergies have been killing me in the last month, so I can’t imagine what that would have been like wearing contacts.

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 8:49 pm

      i love that you embrace your glasses and have made them part of your “look” (the pair you have now really suit you). i really disliked wearing glasses ever since day one – i think i still have a phobia! hope your allergies get better asap!!

  • Johanna B  On September 19, 2011 at 2:36 pm

    No lasers on these eyes. I have the very beginnings of cataracts which means that someday I will have to have surgery. I will wait until I’m pretty nearly legally blind before I take the chance and they’ll have to knock me out to do it. The thought of looking up into a laser cutting into my eye is unbearable. Yuch.

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 2:40 pm

      i hear you! i heard you can hear and smell *things* during the lasering, too!!! yikes!

  • Dorry  On September 19, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    My vision is pretty good! I don’t wear glasses or contacts, but should probably have an eye test, come to think of it since it’s been a long time! πŸ™‚ Billy got lasik before I ever met him, and it’s hard for me to imagine that he used to wear contacts everyday.

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 12:23 pm

      oh, i envy you your naturally clear vision, dorry! glad billy took the lasik plunge and now enjoys no contacts!!!

  • Zo  On September 19, 2011 at 9:53 am

    I could have written this post. I’ve worn gasses since first grade, contacts since 6th.
    Do you use any eye drops? They might help. I had 2 scratched cornea episodes a fee years ago so the doc recommended drops because dry eye was making me more susceptible to scratches and irritation. And things like wearing lenses all day and (sigh) aging can also play a role (I also now have prescription drops).
    Anyway, yep, I feel like I’m wearing pajamas when I go out in my glasses..although I did update after the scratch incidents. And I agree about LASIK. Also, I’m afraid I’d be in the percentage with problems!

    • Zo  On September 19, 2011 at 9:54 am

      Darn iPhone induced spelling errors! Glasses (not gasses) and few (not fee).

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 10:05 am

      contacts in sixth grade??! no fair!!! and i just have to laugh, zo, because your statement “i’m afraid i’d be in the % with problems” fits your “striving cynic” name to a T! πŸ™‚ and i should have mentioned: yes, i use eye drops 2x per day, at the suggestion of my eye doc. i do think they help.

  • Holly  On September 19, 2011 at 7:35 am

    Cathy I bet we have the same prescription πŸ™‚ Seriously I cannot see if my contacts are not in! I have worn glasses since 2nd grade and I got contacts in 8th grade — and I love that the newer kinds of contacts are so much more comfortable. I remember having to take them out after 8 hours or so, now I can wear them all day (and supposedly I can sleep in them but I don’t like that idea).

    I would love to get the corrective surgery, but like you I am scared something will go wrong. Sure I can barely see now, but what if I end up seeing worse? Plus, my eye doctor told me that I should wait a few more years because apparently the surgery works best if your eyes don’t get worse each year. Well, mine do, so he said I wouldn’t be a good candidate. Maybe he just wants to keep me as a customer? Who knows. Either way I’m happy with my contacts + glasses (when I’m sick or home all day) for now!

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 9:09 am

      i agree – the contacts keep getting more and more comfortable. the ones i wear now are not the newest on the market, but my eye doc said that since i find them very comfortable, i might as well stick with them. that’s interesting that the surgery works best if your eyes have stabilized – i didn’t know! and yes – what if you end up worse off? i have heard of people having like “halo vision” after. funny that you don’t wear your glasses that much, either!

  • Johanna  On September 19, 2011 at 7:09 am

    I’m behind you 100% on getting a prescription for the kiki glasses! πŸ™‚
    I had to get glasses in my early 20s for ‘eye strain’ when working on the computer. The eye doc said that my eyes were fine, they just needed a little boost to help with looking at a screen all day. I could/can walk around with them on all day – that’s how weak they are. In the last 6 months, however? Well, things are definitely changing. Just added to my list of things to do this week… call the eye doc. I can no longer deny that a new prescription is needed – I need to hold things further away all the time! So far distance vision is A-OK. I can’t really complain, though. I had the same prescription for 20 years!

    • 1970kikiproject  On September 19, 2011 at 9:11 am

      wow, 20 years without change is fantastic! and yes – make that appt today, ok?! i think we can blame all our computer time for a lot of our eye woes, these days. i’m not entirely joking about the big black frames for regular glasses!… πŸ™‚

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