Working My Contacts

Nothing unnatural about this!

In spite of the fact that I’m moving in just over a week, quitting my job of eight years, and prepping to begin graduate school, I looked at my life and decided that there simply weren’t enough changes to adjust to. To that end, I am now shedding 25 years of history and using contact lenses instead of glasses. The logic here was that I’m on my current job’s vision plan until the end of the month, and I’ve spent a lot of years not taking advantage of it. Well no more of that! Now I can join the ranks of people who stick their fingers in their eye on a daily basis.

This is not actually my first attempt. Back in high school in Senegal I made another attempt. That time didn’t end very well. They never were very comfortable or clear for me. I’m thinking now that it’s because they never got the right curvature for my eyes. This makes since, because my head and feet are already big enough to be inconvenient. Why should my eyes be any different? I’m happy to report that this second try has been far more fruitful.

However it has not been without its challenges. Like I said, my eyes have 25 years of history with glasses. My doctor says this has trained them to not blink  enough. Seems to me that if they can still see I’m blinking enough, even if it’s not the optimal amount, but then I’m not the eye doctor here. Either way my eyes aren’t always taking the transition heroically. It’s a strange experience to relearn an involuntary reflex, but that’s kind of how it feels. I’ll sense my vision blurring and I’ll have to blink a couple times to straighten stuff out. Suddenly I’m very aware when the AC is high in a room because my eyes feel…cold, I guess. It’s not so bad when the climate is steamy or when I’m weeping, but I can’t very well be in the shower or watch Rudy all day long, now can I?

I’m getting pretty good at putting them in though, which is pretty good. I mean, your body is programmed to not let something touch your eye. Voluntarily putting something there every day is like training your stomach to not protest when you drink bleach. This morning I got both of them in on the first try, followed by the customary blinking and watering that accompanies any small piece of plastic on your cornea. As I went about my morning I became a little irritated at the right eye, which wasn’t really focusing properly. I kept trying to blink the problem away, but it didn’t work. I complained about it to my wife, and I wondered if I had put it in upside-down. Then I hear her calling from our bedroom, “Honey, there’s a contact lens in our sink.”

Oh. Well that would explain the problem.

So I guess that the comfort and can’t-feel-them quality of contacts cuts both ways. Can’t feel them when I’m wearing them, can’t tell when I’m not. I clearly still have some work to do on my adjustment to contacts.

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