The march through the last diopter continues! I’m right at the 4 ½ year mark now, having started at -5.0 back in April 2014.
Back at the end of June, I decided to try going without glasses (unless absolutely needed) for 30 days, to see what would happen. I didn’t think that I was ready to be without correction full time, but it seemed a worthy experiment. Since 30 days has always been my testing ground for a new normalized, I hypothesized that I might experience a boost in acuity after 30 days without glasses. I’m not sure if it made any difference or not from a vision standpoint, but I did break through a major psychological hurdle.
When I first headed out to business, social, and family events, I felt naked and very insecure without the glasses! My major observation, though is that no one actually cared or paid much attention. During those 30 days, only 3 people (2 of whom were family members) asked me why I wasn’t wearing my glasses. And in truth, after 4 ½ years of this vision improvement journey, only 6 or 7 people have asked my about reduced glasses wearing (and if you take out family members, the grand total is 1 or 2).
The general challenge for me now is that I can often produce clarity with no glasses, but can’t yet consistently hold on it. So, at any given time, I might see really well without glasses, or it might feel like everything is blur. The needle is moving in the right direction, but very slowly. Still, the no glasses experiment helped to build an underlying sense of confidence. I’m doing something that few people know is possible, and most of the professionals say is impossible. There was something very powerful about experiencing life for a month without correction, directly seeing that I don’t fully “need” the glasses anymore. I’ve been able to do simple things like recognize my daughter from over a hundred feet away at the pool and leave my glasses at home when going out for a day at the beach with full confidence that I would be able to recognize my family from a distance.
Additionally, I can honestly say that I’ve come to love the process. The angst about glasses v. no glasses / “how long will this take” is gone from my mind. I know the day is coming when I’ll put them away for good. The date no longer matters to me.
Interestingly, my -1.00 lenses gradually become very uncomfortable to wear. So much so, that I decided to move down to -0.75. I’m a little over a month into these and things seem to be settling well. They’re definitely not overcorrected, but I am able to get functional vision with them. 20/20 in ideal conditions, but it varies based upon light, close up time, etc.
I’ve been having clear flashes for over a year now. Sometimes they are in both eyes, sometimes just one eye at a time. This is encouraging, especially to know that my non-dominant eye can pull its weight and produce 20/20 type clarity sometimes! Typically, these have only lasted a few minutes at a time, but they’re becoming more frequent. I had my longest one this past Saturday – it wasn’t a constant 20/20, but from 6:00 PM until I went to bed at 11, I was able to relax into seeing the 20/40 line in florescent light…if I were able to see like that normally, I’d never wear minus lenses again.
As it stands, the vision continues to be quite inconsistent. Still, the trajectory is good and I’m starting to carry this sense with me of “even when it’s not clear, I know what it’s supposed to look like.”
For now, I’ll stay the course, continue to love the process, and for my own amusement, set a target date of 2/20/2020 to be back to 20/20. As I said before, the date doesn’t really matter. Even now, I’ve all but stopped wearing correction outside (doesn’t feel good and I really don’t need it) and I’m starting to find moments where the -0.75 feel uncomfortable to the point that I do well enough without them. Bit by bit, I’ll get there!