Doesn't that sound scary?
Yes, I'm doing an experiment with my eyes. And yes, I am doing this under rudimentary supervision by (and collaboration with, and at the encouragement of) my optometrist.
1) Because I can;
2) Because for the first time in ages, I do not need to replace my lenses with new ones (because my prescription has not changed), and thus the funds previously sort of soft-allocated to new glasses or lenses need not be spent;
3) Because it has the potential to make various parts of my life easier; and
4) Because my optometrist is awesome, and will only be charging me for trying if it works.
Anyone have a guess yet?
Let's go to the history vault.
Some half-dozen years ago, I was teaching. I was frustrated by perpetually taking off my glasses and putting them on because even with the progressive bi-focals, close work was never really clear if I was wearing them, but across the room wasn't clear if I wasn't wearing them. The optometrist and I discussed contacts.
One solution - give me distance vision contacts, and let me wear reading glasses. That would not have stopped the taking off and putting on issue, but it would have changed it some. It would have solved the hunt for glasses to watch TV.
Another solution - a jaunt into monovision - with one contact for near vision and one for far vision. I tried it once in the early 90's and wasn't happy. But I thought I'd give it a shot. This time, we reversed the eyes. Evidently, most folks get their right eye (or perhaps what is perceived as their dominant eye) set for distance. That is a nightmare for me. However, we discovered that if my right eye is set for near vision, and my left for distance, the vision part works.
I was tickled beyond measure. I put my tester contacts in, and went off to learn to wear them. Soon, I found that while my left eye was as happy as ... well ... as happy as an eye could be, my right eye was deeply offended. It itched. A lot. I feel certain that I blogged about it, but cannot find the entry.
We tried various sizes and changes to the lens for my right eye. I began to fear they'd start charging me rent because I was at the optometrist's office all the time. Eventually, I gave up. Feeling like the proper solution for what ailed me was a wire brush applied directly to my eyeball to scratch the deep abiding itch was a sign to me that contacts were not in my immediate future.
Since then, I've started massage. I find that at some point during any given massage, my glasses start slipping. It's annoying. It's worse because I inevitably miss by a hair's breadth when I go to push them back up, and get oil on the lenses. I'd keep them off for the massage, except that I need to look at the clock periodically, and without my glasses I can't see it well. Frustrating. Makes me want contacts.
So this week.... I'm trying again. Since I paid for the fitting etc. last time, but didn't wind up with contacts, the lovely man is letting me have at it again, and will only charge me for that part of the program if it works this time.
Yesterday, I came home wearing contacts. I kept reaching for my glasses to put them on. I got in the car, and reached for my glasses, because we all know that I cannot see well enough to drive safely without my glasses. I resisted putting them on. And, I managed to wear the contacts for four hours without mishap. Eventually, my eyes became a little cranky, but didn't really hurt. I took them out successfully. There was no itching.
This morning, I put them in again. My eyes aren't truly happy -- they feel kind of gummy, but I think if I go put the magic not-quite saline solution in them, they'll feel better. They do not itch. In about 45 minutes, I will be giving a massage. We'll see how it works.
Kitty is also lobbying for contacts. She also has escaped a prescription change. I told her we'd try in a month if she can get and keep her bathroom clean for the month.