I wear contact lenses. I have had them since eighth grade, when my grandmother decided no child should have to have braces and Coke-bottle bottom glasses. (Thank you grandma). I was for all intents and purposes, blind as a bat for most of my life. I never renewed my eyeglass prescription after I got my contacts; because I vowed I would never put them on again until modern technology could find a way make thin lenses for me. They never did.
I spent countless nights feeling my way around a crib in the dark trying to find a pacifier, and then running my hands over my sons face trying to find his mouth so that I could pop it back in. Sad, but true. And for years it worked fine. He never once ended up with a pacifier in his eye, or his ear.
When we moved to SC we had better insurance and a little extra money thanks to the real estate market in CT, so I signed up for LASIK.
What an amazing concept! Within 24 hours I had 20/20 vision, something that for all of my life I was told would never be possible for me. I had just had my second child and it was a game changer to be able to see the little bugger in the middle of the night! Awesomeness!!
Fast forward 10 years later, and as the 40’s have roared into my life and brought with them a myriad of ailments and issues, my vision has deteriorated once again. No, I am not blind as I once was, but I am back into contact lenses and a hideous pair of glasses that I will not wear out in public unless perhaps my house is burning down and I needed to find them to save my children or my dogs.
Which brings me to todays rant, observation, whatever you choose to call it.
Consider the contact lens case. They are small things, non descript for the most part, though they do offer a variety of colors if you choose. At my last appointment I asked if my contact lenses could be tinted or imprinted in some way so that I could easily identify right from left. The technician smiled sweetly and said no, that I would surely know if I got them mixed up right away. ‘Not to worry.’
She was wrong.
Prior to LASIK my right eye truly was a step away from being legally blind, so my right contact lens was not some flimsy gelatinous piece of goo. It was a sturdy thing that bounced if I dropped it. Post surgery, I have two equally thick, almost identical prescription lenses. Almost. But not quite.
The really frustrating part is that the average contact lens case is just about worthless when it comes to identifying which is which once you have your lenses out. I have several of them and they are all equally lame. Yes, they make one cap a darker or different color than the other, but if you are tired and busy and maybe had a beer or two, or the kids are talking to you, or you are talking to your husband, who remembers if your right lens went in the dark blue or light blue side after 6 hours of sleep? There is no catchy rhyming way to remind me either. Righty tighty, lefty loosey does not apply. ‘Aren’t they marked with R and L, ‘ you ask? Why yes, they are. They imprinted, embossed, engraved or whatever you want to call it in exactly the same color as the cap. I do not call this labeled. Because when I have my lenses out, it all looks the same. Blurry!
Folks we are talking about visually impaired people here-some worse than me. Who on earth thought a small, imprinted R or L would suffice as a labeling tool? Take a Sharpie to that thing! I’d like my R and L in large neon letters, BOLD and can they be raised like braille instead of indented? I am sure I can identify an L by feel.
Today I wondered around with what I am sure was my contact lenses in backwards. Things just felt off. I suppose it could have been me, or the sun, or the fact that I am so tired, but I am betting today they were swapped. Until I put in a new pair, I won’t know for sure which is a bit of a problem since all of my toiletries are in a warehouse in Atlanta.
See what I mean??