Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Life Is Back in Focus

Every since I was young, I made a yearly visit to the ophthalmologist. Back in the day, (that day being one of great health insurance) such things were routine events, especially for those (like me) with really bad vision. I have been wearing glasses since age six, which might tell you something about my early social life. I would sit in the crowded doctor’s office (with other budding social misfits), eyes dilated, listening to my six-transistor radio. For some reason, my yearly eye exam was right around my birthday so I’d be sitting there, eyes glassy, listening to my new Zenith, Viscount or GE radio (birthday gift complete with mono earphone).

As a diabetic, there is great concern over my eyes. As the joke goes, they are the first to go. Each year, I have a nasty medical eye exam with pressure testing, bright lights and a thorough dilation. The doctor explained that diabetics take longer for their dilation to take effect and longer for it to wear off. So, until bedtime last night, my life was out of focus.

Knock wood, my eyes are fine. I have baby cataracts, but that’s common for the population at large (over 50) and for diabetics specifically. These cataracts are 10 years away from being troublesome, and easily corrected with a laser procedure. They were first discovered by my ophthalmologist in Marin County several years ago. Aside from my doctor when I was a youngster (head of eye surgery for the famous Wills Eye Hospital), she was the best. Before I was diagnosed with diabetes, she found my eyes curious and questioned my general health. I’ll keep an eye out for her next time I’m in Calfironia.