In my mind I’m still 26, I liked 26, lots of exciting things happened that year. A few I’ve since lived to regret (who knew fairy tales don’t always end happily), but then that was over 20 years ago and we all make mistakes. 26 was also the age that I first realised that your body can let you down. I’d always had perfect vision, but still maintained the regular eye tests I’d had since childhood. But suddenly I needed glasses, I worked in an office, glued to a computer screen, I guess it was always going to happen. ‘My eyesight is letting me down’ wasn’t really in my mind though, it wasn’t such a big issue, only a minor inconvenience.
I could live with it, although I did go thorough a series of God awful glasses (what fashion sense?), from the massive Deirdre Barlow plastic framed style right through to the round metal rimmed John Lennon look, I followed all the latest trends!??!
At some point I decided to try contact lenses, probably after getting fed up with glasses that steamed up every time I walked in a pub. I liked the flexibility they gave me, but wearing glasses didn’t really bother me either.
Over the years my eyesight remained fairly stable, some change, but nothing too drastic. But over the last 5 years I’ve really seen quite a sharp deterioration. I read every night in bed and finally had to get reading glasses last year as I just couldn’t see what I was reading at all.
My optician and I have been experimenting with vari-focal contact lenses for a while, trying to find a solution that works for me. I have astigmatism which adds to the joy. At one point he found some lenses which were perfect for me, a left eye lenses which came from the States, matched with a right eyed lens from the UK. It all started well, but the left lenses were made of a really fine material, required more manual handling and I struggled to make each one last a week, let alone a month.
So now we’re back to UK lenses, they are vari-focal, but not designed for people with astigmatism. But they are ok, not perfect obviously, but ok.
But just before Christmas my last pair split and I couldn’t get replacements until the new year. I have my reading glasses and some glasses I can use for driving, but I soon realised I really need to upgrade to a pair of vari-focal glasses, as I spent so much time having to ask others what things said! Definitely something I must sort pronto. My eyesight is letting me down and I have to deal with it.
But even with my vari-focal lenses in, I’ve noticed a big change in my eyesight over the last year. I love Cross Stitch. It’s something I did regularly before Monkey was born, and it’s a love I’ve rekindled over the last year or two. But all of a sudden I realise I’m struggling to differentiate between symbols on the chart, and can’t see the holes when I need to stitch. It’s got me rather depressed if I’m honest. I’ve tried using my reading glasses but they don’t help either. My eyesight is letting me down, it’s a fact.
I’m in the middle of a cross stitch project you might have spotted on Instagram. It’s taking much longer then I’d envisaged as I’m so tired in the evenings and then, well, my eyesight is letting me down. I’ve found a little magnifying glass which has helped a little but it’s not a long-term solution.
So I’m going to be seeing the optician again. Would vari-focal glasses be the solution, rather than contacts? If I’m honest, I’ve been putting off making the appointment. What if there is no solution which will help me with my hobby. I’d be so gutted, and I’m not sure I’m ready to be told that I’m getting old, and things aren’t working as they should. It’s avoiding the issue, I know. But who likes to admit that they aren’t quite 26 anymore!
Do you have any experience of vari-focal glasses?