It’s time…

This blog as been the hole-in-the-wall that allowed you to peak through into what was my human story. I have unlocked my secret garden of memories and experiences for you to wander through at your leisure.

My writing, I hope, is experiential and visual; it is my way of showing you what I saw on this incredible journey of sight rebirth, and how that affected me.

It still affects me.

Now it’s time to get into the science of the matter. In fact, we’re really talking neuroscience here, and as for the matter; well that will be your brain. The incredible science within us all, is what is, and always has been, the raison d’etre for this blog.

So, let me introduce you to the “Talking to Lampposts” exhibition.

This will be the physical manifestation of these words…this story. It is the real, tangible place you will be able to visit to touch what I touched, and feel what I felt…and what’s more we’ll tell you what was going on inside, because that’s where the real story lies. 

Welcome to the next stage…

 

A sidelong glance

I’m not sure if I had any idea of the world around me, not really; and I am talking literally here. I have been missing out on a secret garden, a whole series of scenes and stories. Amazingly this fringe world has been playing out in my peripheral vision without me ever knowing it.

I only know this because today I was introduced to my peripheral vision; the side-view that sits just beyond what is comfortable. It has opened up a Pandora’s box for me, this new slice of life has tickled my brain, and I can’t believe I have been overlooking it all this time.

If I was to explain in a sentence what vision therapy is; and let’s face it when we pass each other in the street you want me to elucidate what I’ve been up to in a nutshell, not a lengthy tome. I can now say, in the interest of brevity and succinctness that this week, vision therapy has not been about what I can see all day every day, but more about what I don’t see, and how I feel about that…

Try it for yourself.

Wallace and Grommets

My new lower prescription specs arrived in the post and got their first outing at Croydon University hospital. The intention is for my eyes to level out a little and to reduce the dominance of my right eye. It is also to restrict my constant habit of trying to focus all the time.

My specs firmly planted on my nose we set off; and for once a hospital visit was not all about me.

Our daughter has suffered from a loss of hearing over the last year or so and after months of suppressed comedy moments arising from her mishearing words, it was decided that grommmets were the answer.

With my new specs the world still looks faded like an old photograph, but now I cannot easily read the overhead signs, which up until today had leapt out of the haze with their crisp black and white lines. There is a more uniform fuzziness covering my visual field now. I can actually see less.

With my daughter safely deposited on her ward bed left curled around her Daddy like a cat replete in the knowledge she is centre of attention, I headed to the café with her bored little brother.

The little one found this particular outing to be highly engaging. Swinging his arms and with his jerky puppet walk he casually bumped into patients and visitors as he zigzagged down the corridor ahead of me. I noticed how his sense of special awareness is almost nonexistent, yet his smile is constant.

His attention flitted from one subject to another provoking a series of pertinent observations to spill out of his mouth before I had chance to intervene. Given his eye line is about waist height now there is an array of material for a 4 year old to comment on.

“She’s going to die soon Mummy.” He casually and loudly informed me over his shoulder, his finger pointing at an elderly lady in a gown. My horror was so sudden I couldn’t even mutter an apology to the woman, I just managed to usher him down the corridor only to then nearly bump headlong into a heavily pregnant woman. Unsure of what her prognosis might be, I violently wheeled us both down a side corridor towards the café, and out of harms way. Of course my sense of direction in my new glasses is worse than normal, even though I am familiar with the hospital layout. The fog that floats over my vision obliterates so much detail…

As I stood looking flummoxed the little one gently tugged my hand and pointed to another grey-filmed corridor. “Mummy, your eyes aren’t working today, the café’s down there!”

As I looked down at him I realised with a sigh that he was quite right.

15 minutes of gain…

I have been given 15 minutes in which to do my thinking.

I now have to condense and abridge my musings into this restricted time slot. My eye health is part of my vision therapy programme, and like the smoker trying to quit, I too have to curtail my habit.

I also have to spend time without my glasses on. This is something I had already been doing; but in the recent past it had been in order to give myself a break from my sight. This now seems an anomaly, and indeed I find myself questioning my rationale and behaviour and wonder if the answers were there all the time; tucked away behind my lenses.

My blurred, hazy vision without myopic correction is stable and slow, it doesn’t fizz and jig; nor does it aggravate me. This fuzzy cotton wool sight is calming, and temporarily brightens my world. I had noticed this incongruity and often took off my glasses to simply tilt my head back and stare at the sky. The experience of absorbing more luminosity, more light was somehow organic and biological.

I now realise I felt that way because in fact, I got more light. That might seem incredibly obvious, but like many things in front of our face, we don’t always see the obvious. The fact is that when I remove my lenses my eyes cannot strain and fight to use their central focusing, which in turn allows more light to flood my retina. Ergo I see more light.

Step one; and it seems so simple.

Times up…