I’ve Got Another Puzzle for You

Do you know the scene towards the end of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (Gene Wilder, not Johnny Depp, although that will work too) where Mike Teavee decides he wants to be the first person to try out Mr. Wonka’s Wonkavision and gets himself shrunk and sent to the taffy pulling room? Well, I don’t know if it was the Valium they gave me before hand, but I will be darned if that isn’t what Dr. Carlson’s laser surgical suite looks like. It did not help that I was wearing cream colored sweats.

The first part of the procedure required good Dr. C to place a suction cup in my eye to hold it open whilst the little laser beam cut a flap in my eye. (This involves bubbles somehow, but I wasn’t really paying attention.) This is made all the more difficult because there is a brief period of blacking out when he sticks the suction cup to a gal’s eye. It’s always interesting when you learn something new about yourself. Apparently, I have small, closely set eyes. The suction cup did not want to stay in my eye. My powerful lids just kept squeezing it out of the tiny space. “You’re doing just fine. We’ll get it,” soothed Dr. Carlson while patting me on the cheek with his delightfully cool hands. I laid there and tried to think about how lovely it was going to be not to have glasses and to keep my eye wide open and not squeeze the suction cup out even when the room went completely scary and dark.

We got the flap made in my eye and then came the even stranger part of watching him rearrange my lens and laser my eye. I started to smell a smell. A burning smell. “Dr. Carlson? Is that horrible burning smell my eye?” I asked. “That,” replied Dr. C. “is the smell of your nearsightedness being blasted away.”

Very good then.

So it was all over and I was guided to Brent by a small orange oompa loompa. “When the anesthesia wears off, it’s going to burn a little.”

Dear heavens above. Do you remember the other day when I was worried about what I was going to do in the dark all afternoon? I laid in the dark with my eyes closed and tried not to concentrate on my eyes being on fire is what I did. No need for books on CD. I would not have been able to listen anyway. After a few hours it stopped burning and I put on sunglasses and watched TV.

Today, due to the small closely set eye thing, my eyes are so bloodshot, I look as though I have left Jesus and gone to the other side. It feels just fine, but it looks terrible. “Yeah, you look a little tougher than average,” said the understated Dr. Carlson at this morning’s check up.

Now here’s the thing: Done. It’s done. I see. No glasses. No contacts. I see. (I’ll be honest it’s a little blurry, but I understand this is going to get better.) Can you believe we live in a time when such a thing is possible? I am not a prairie pioneer girl stuck in a sod hut slowly going crazy with out-of-prescription spectacles. I am a modern mom on the go with NO corrective eye wear at all.

Amazing. A-mazing.

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One thought on “I’ve Got Another Puzzle for You

  1. ML, glad it went well, as well as these things can go, anyway. My mother had this procedure as well after a lifetime of being VERY nearsighted. I'm lucky — I've never had glasses. They tell me it will happen someday, but I've made it to 41 without any kind of correction. I can only imagine the exhilaration you must feel, but I know I was very excited for my mom after all those years of seeing her bump around in the morning to find her spectacles. 🙂

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