At the start of this month I had LASIK eye surgery to correct my vision and it was one of the most unbelievable and amazing things that I have ever done.
I have worn glasses since I was 10 and I hated them. My dislike was a super personal thing, I don’t think I have opinions on glasses in general, but I couldn’t stand wearing mine. It wasn’t the frames, it wasn’t anything I could change (I was too shit at putting in contacts for them to let me have them) I just didn’t like anything about having to wear them– so for the most part I didn’t.
legit only picture i can currently find of me wearing my glasses.
I spent a good amount of time walking around not being able to see. My eyesight wasn’t the worst – it was a lot shittier than most people realised but I could live without them so long as I wasn’t expected to read anything or see things in detail. For example I couldn’t see faces from a distance; I used to tell people a part by the way they moved rather than what they actually looked like. My friends and family adjusted to having to read above- counter menus for me and explain what was going on in the distance and life ticked on.
To be honest it was shit. I had no self-confidence with my glasses on but I needed them in class, at work and basically at all the places that I wanted to feel my best.I knew that there was a lot of people thought I was being purposefully rude whereas reality was I couldn’t see them to say hello. I kind of preferred to keep my head down rather than interact with a group who I couldn’t see clearly.There were a few days in school where I forgot to bring my glasses and subsequently spent the whole day sitting directly underneath the board trying to copy it down. It sucked – so safe to say this surgery was a game changer.
Nowadays I can see! I don’t need to carry my glasses case wherever I go, I don’t need to wear them anymore at work or the beach or whenever I want to see. I can actually appreciate the world and not feel an incessant lack of self-esteem! I love it, I love it, I love it.
I was incredibly lucky to get it – shout out to Dad who paid for the procedure. He had it done himself about thirteen years ago and believes it be worth everything.
My procedure was done at the Eye Institute in Auckland and the entire experience was super easy, calm and pleasant. First off the waiting room is beautiful – they have free wifi and a coffee machine and plush couches to sit on. The bathroom even has moisturising soap! More importantly though, every single person I met was so kind and friendly – the lady I talked to on the phone greeted me as if I was her best friend and it made me so happy. I couldn’t recommend them any higher, they were the best.
The first step was a free eye examination to check if I was eligible.. The main thing they were looking for was eye health and stabilisation of prescription. I am blessed in that my prescription hasn’t actually changed since I was fourteen so I was given the go ahead.
I took both of my parents along to my actual surgery which was good fun – the people you take can watch the procedure happen so it’s exciting for them if they aren’t squeamish.
On the day you spend a bit of time in the pre-op room. You are given a pain killer and some numbing eye drops and then finally you kiss your family goodbye and head for the surgery room. You get to lie down on a bed and can get a blanket if it’s cold and then it begins.
Your eyes are held open by these rings – but you can’t feel it AT ALL. There is a wild bit where your sight disappears even though you know your eyes are being held open which is kind of stressful. It doesn’t hurt but there is a pressure pushing down. Honestly for me I felt like I was floating and there were all these flashing lights in the black – it was such an alien experience. The nurse holds onto your hand to gauge your response to the pressure and that was the only thing that stopped me from flying right out of the room, a part from my grip on her hand I legitimately felt I had no control over my body.
Then they move to the laser part which was weird. It was slightly uncomfortable, though again not painful. The surgeon talks you through everything – he is constantly calming and encouraging you so you know what you are meant to be doing. There was one part I remember being stressed because I was meant to be looking at this orange flashing light but every now and then it would disappear and I couldn’t find it to look at. Later I found out that what he was actually doing during this part was cutting off a layer of my eye, letting the laser correct underneath and then putting it back on which is super weird to imagine but explains my temporary lack of sigh. Mum filmed it for me so I could watch it later, cheers Mum what a pal.
And then, only really 15 minutes later, you’re done. You open your eyes, you are led to the recovery room where you can see glimpses of things out the window that are suddenly more clear and then you’re told to settle and close your eyes. Mum and Dad were allowed in, they were meant to entertain me but mostly spent the time taking photos of me – what excellent parents.
You have one last eye test and get some eye drops which you get to take home and plastic goggle are taped over your face to protect your eyes – then you are good to go! You have to keep your eyes closed for most of the day you help with healing so honestly consider the day a total write off. I would recommend having someone to look after you just because you are a bit exhausted and disorientated from it all. I went home, had a snack and then took a sleeping pill and slept until dinner. I also found a Harry Potter audiobook which was surprisingly entertaining so that was really nice and I spent most of my awake hours, lying in the dark listening to that.
That day you can open your eyes and see out of them, but things are a bit blurry and ache when you try to focus too hard so mostly all you do want to do is sleep!
The next day it’s a whole new world! You are still light sensitive and need sunglasses to protect against the glare but also you can see!! The only warning I have is that your eyes may be bruised and super bloodshot – mine were vampire red and are only just coming right three and half weeks later which was a laugh when starting two new jobs. But hey! Worth it!
I had a follow up appointment the next day and one again two days later and that was it for the next month! They just made sure I knew when to apply my eye drops and answered any questions I had and then I was good to go.
Life since is incredible. I can see! I can see people in their cars and individual blades of grass and people swimming in the sea when I was at the beach. I don’t need to worry about wearing them at work or the pub quiz or for uni anymore. I don’t need to stress about how I’ll wear them on fast speed rides or swimming or playing sport or skydiving or whatever.
If this surgery is applicable and the chance is ever presented to you to have it – I would 100% recommend. It is life changing in the most simple and important way – often I forget about it and just see – but the point is that the worry I used to feel is now eliminated. I would never, ever want to go back.
Post 14! My lucky number. Love you pals xx