Up at 6 a.m. I'm very excited about this morning's appointment. I'm going to see my Ophthalmologist. I love this man. Well, now his son, who took over his practice last year. Marriage came with many gifts, not least among them the opportunity to join my husband's medical plan. First thing I did (O.K. maybe fifth) was to schedule an appointment with an Ophthalmologist who worked with visually impaired children. I knew this doctor could change my life.
I was born without the use of one eye. One eye turned in, evidently quite fond of my nose. The other eye picked up the slack and took on my little world. One eye made sense of all its shapes and contrasts. One eye learned to read. It wasn't until I was 5 years old that I had an operation to correct my crossed eyes. My 24/7/365 eye patch and daily eye exercise did rouse my brain to recognize shapes - a door, a table, a mountain, a face, a plate. Exactly what is on the plate, what shape a person's nose is, what color their eyes are, what particular trees are growing on the mountain eludes my second eye. Letters, well, letters can be understand if they are big and blocky. Since it obviously takes two working eyes to understand depth, I relied on other cues. Perspective was one. Tactile information was another. I'd grasp a handrail going down stairs, gingerly feeling where the first step down might be. Once you know how far down the first step is, you can continue down hands free! Nobody wanted me on their softball team, when that ball was in the middle of nowhere out there.
I adjusted to mild vision impairment. No big deal. I can drive. I am pretty good at memorizing the letters on an eye chart with my good eye. I could pass the driver's license exam.
Time's up! Oh, I do go on. Very quickly... This very special ophthalmologist took on a woman in her thirties with a thirst to see more. For five years he and I worked together weekly in a room with a collection of hanging objects and other gizmos. As his other clients were 5 and under, his furniture was on the small side for me.
I got my miracle. Mid thirties might be a little late for the brain to play catch up reading letters, but I got my miracle. I now see through both eyes. I now have depth perception. I am thrilled, thrilled I can pour liquid from a pitcher and actually have it land IN the glass.
I get to go to my Ophthalmologist today. His son has taken over his father's practice. And he is as sweet as his dad. I thank his father Ira from the bottom of my heart.
Wishing you a bright and colorful day!