Friday, March 5, 2010


I'd known for some time that I needed new glasses, but had been putting off going to the optometrist because I thought he'd check the status of my cataracts again and I'm just not ready to undergo that surgery.

However, push finally came to shove. Two things were bothering me in particular. 1) Driving ... ... I was getting around "just fine" only because I know Houston so well. I really don't recommend fuzzy distance viewing. 2) Working at the computer ... ... My bifocals didn't work at all - neither top nor bottom portions of the lenses - and, because my eyes were receiving no help for the astigmatism (right) or floating 'stuff'* (left), they quickly became tired. I gave in and called for an appointment.

This time around I had two different types of glasses in mind, trifocals and driving glasses. The driving glasses were a no-brainer, but the trifocals idea stemmed from the three different distances I focus on most often ... a) reading or solving word puzzles/games, (b) working at the computer (2') and c) watching television (3') at the kitchen table while doing the latter part of a). Sounded like trifocals to me!

[I've had bifocals for over thirty years. I remember getting my first pair. My husband went with me, because we'd been warned by the ophthalmologist that they'd take a bit of getting used to. It's a good thing he went with me and was holding my arm. I'd have fallen on my face more than once! Took a while to get used to them.]

I really like my optometrist. Have been going to him for years! The exam is usually quite thorough, and initially done by one of his interns. He gets them on three-month rotations from one of the local schools. I haven't met a bad one yet, altho there was one I thought was a little suspect a few years back. The optometrist does the final exam ... asking questions of me, correcting and making suggestions to the intern all the while. Kind of fascinating, actually.

I was relieved when he didn't mention having a closer look to see how fast my cataracts were developing, and I wasn't about to bring up the subject, so there you have it. The only question we had was whether or not to order trifocals with demarcation lines.

The driving glasses were made while I waited, and then (By the way, I love them!) the doctor had me try on this gizmo, showing me how graduated lenses w/o lines would be. I didn't like it at all, so we ordered ones with lines.

When I got the call a week or so later, however, telling me my trifocals were in, I didn't immediately trot my body on over there to pick them up. I was really nervous about it, even though I had been assured that we could easily go another direction if I didn't like them. (He wants no unsatisfied customers!) But, I finally went - four days later and brought them home with me. I didn't even try them on. I just looked to see if they were trifocals. They were.

Well, ok. Showtime. I sat down at the kitchen table, put on my brand new trifocals, turned on the tv and began working a puzzle. So far so good. The top and bottom lenses appeared to be correct. I didn't need the middle one unless I was working at the computer, but I wasn't in any hurry to try that out. Chicken. Yes, I was!

I was due to mentor Thursday evening at the bridge studio. As I was parking the car in the lot, I thought, "Boy, this'll be a great place to try out the whole range of my new glasses!" For months, I'd been putting on my bifocals to sort and bid my hand and then placing them on the table for the play and defense. I thought this would be just a fabulous test, and couldn't believe I hadn't thought of that when the idea of trifocals first occurred to me.

The whole evening was spent in wonder and total clarity of vision. What a wonderfully pleasant surprise! Never took my new glasses off the whole time (except when I left the table to walk around). My goodness!

Since then, of course, I often wear my trifocals when working at the computer. In fact, I have them on right now. It takes a while to get used to that narrower middle lense, but eventually it does happen and you get to the point where you don't even notice the lines. One of my smarter moves in recent years.


*See this post for more info on floating 'stuff' in my left eye.


Polimom said...

Hey! That's wonderful to hear, Goldenrod! Knowing how hard bifocals are to get used to (I have a pair that I NEVER wear), I'm really shocked to hear how trifocals went.

Good news!

The Bug said...

Good for you for finally taking care of yourself! I might end up with bifocals eventually. I had REALLY near-sighted eyes, but had the lasik surgery to correct them. That was about 5 years ago. Now I'm about to the point (at age 46) of needing reading glasses. And my far vision is slowly getting just a bit worse (this is expected). I'm holding out as long as I can - after wearing glasses & contacts for 33 years I've been enjoying not having to mess with that stuff!

Goldenrod said...

I've never worn contacts and so can't speak to any of those problems, Bug, but - then again, I've never had lasik surgery, either, so ... ... ...

So far so good! :)

Craig Peihopa said...

Glad you are OK with the new glasses Goldenrod.

Jacky said...

So glad that the trifocals work and that you are happy with them! As I was reading I was afraid this wouldn't end with good glasses. Probably because my last eye exam didn't go well and I'm not real pleased with my glasses.
Something to think about, my Mom actually "enjoyed" the cataract surgery.
Maybe with the new glasses you will go back to blogging more often!

Chuck said...

I'm glad this was a "happy" post and not a disaster post! Enjoy your improved sight!

Goldenrod said...

Well, I was pretty much shocked at how it all came out, tell you the truth! :)

I've heard many horror stories over the years about corrective lenses, surgery, etc., but was determined that this was the way to go this time. As I said, one of my better decisions. LOL

Polimom, there's no way you can get used to bifocals if you never wear them! Hello?

Jacky, I'm really sorry to hear about your latest bad experience. Your eye doctor didn't guarantee your satisfaction, I guess. :(

Tammy said...

So glad the adjustment went so well. Getting trifocals went alright with my dad, but they still drive my mom nuts after almost 5 years!

Goldenrod said...

Oh, Tammy. Five YEARS?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Glasses are expensive. Ask me. I know. However, it almost sounds to me as tho your mother might be in the market for two pair of glasses ... one for distance (driving and walking around kind of stuff) and bifocals for reading and middle distances.

Tammy said...

I had to get new glasses last summer and was worried I'd need bifocals, but the eye doctor said not yet. My mom needed bifocals quite a long time ago. About the time she sorta started getting used to them she had to switch to trifocals. She still doesn't like them and it's been a LONG time. Not sure what's up with I was saying, my dad really didn't have any problems adjusting to trifocals.