Diary Of A Blended Vision Dad

From Samuel Pepys to Bridget Jones; from Adrian Mole to Anne Frank for as long as I can remember I have been a huge fan of diaries and diarists.

I love everything about diaries – including the crisp optimism and smell of new paper which accompanies each January 1st entry and especially reading the innermost secrets and inevitable indiscretions that their full pages – if ever published – will reveal.

Currently it is Gyles Brandreth’s excellent if a little weighty “Something Sensational to Read in the Train – The Diary of a Lifetime” that has me hooked; but when it comes diaries I am not especially picky.  In our digital age, a blog that is well written and either entertaining and/or informative (preferably both) also works for me.

That is why I was drawn to this blog/diary – http://ezzaviking.wordpress.com. Through it we can follow the journey of a 46-year-old father before, during and after he has Laser Eye Surgery at the London Vision Clinic.

Martin, who is from Kent, had his operation in May 2009 and it took him longer than average to adjust to the blended vision procedure. Unfortunately, in his own words, he was not to be “one of those instant adapters”.  His work in property consultancy meant spending long hours in front of computer screens and with an 18-month-old daughter (at the time of his surgery) who loved swimming he was fed up with the inconvenience of contact lenses and glasses.

Martin swimming with his daughters.

July 27th 2009

“I went to see U2 in Dublin this weekend and that was a good workout for the new vision, especially the light show after dark.  I have no problems at all now with starring or night vision, but the blended vision is much more noticeable in low light.”

After his four-month check up Martin writes: “my problem has been how my brain adapts to the blended vision.  So a few weeks further on, and is there any change?  Well the good news is that I think there is – I am becoming less aware of the different prescriptions in each eye and am generally becoming more tolerant of the difference that is there.  I have the odd bad day where it gets back to a high degree of frustration with the difference in prescription but it is improving slowly.

“Another milestone for me was going swimming on our recent family holiday at Center Parcs – I was able to swim underwater with my eyes open, go down the water slides without worrying about losing goggles and then lenses and so on.”

By February 2010 Martin suggested that his progress was “slower than a snail on a zimmer frame”…but that there had been “definite progress towards getting used to the blended vision.

“It’s now about nine months since my surgery, and I am now having some days where I don’t really notice the blended vision.  I’ve just got back from three weeks in bright sunny Australia, and it’s definitely true that the degree to which I notice the blended vision is inversely proportional to the amount of light there is.”

One year on and Martin addresses the crucial question:“I guess for anyone reading this, the acid question is “do I think it’s worth it” given what I’ve gone through.  I’ve re-read all my entries and remembered all the emotions and feelings I had during the recovery process.  For me, the answer is that it is definitely worth it.  The changes to my life: never having to think about packing lenses, spare glasses, etc when I go away for the weekend; being able to swim without worrying about a lens washing out; never having to put my lenses in with a hangover; now being able to read small print and have sniper vision at distance and not having to think about seeing when the kids wake up in the middle of the night.  Is it worth it?  Oh yes.  I’d do it all again.  If it had any pain attached, I’d probably have a different answer but there has been no discomfort at all after the night of the surgery – amazing.”

Martin’s final entry was in September 2010 when he wrote:“Two more reasons that make me so happy with my decision to have Lasik.  First, delighted as I am with the arrival of daughter number two (now 11 weeks) she has played havoc with sleep patterns and there are many mornings that I’ve been sooooo delighted not to have to jam in some contact lenses in the morning, and less of a pain but equally beneficial is the avoidance of reaching for glasses in the middle of the night.

The second issue is that this week I’ve had bloke flu – full on cold, sneezes, coughs, watery eyes etc and it’s been a real treat again not to have to put in the old lenses at any time and not have to trudge around in glasses all the time.”