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Posted on Friday 3 September 2010 at 3:02 pm

It's a big and blurry world

I went to the eye doctor on Wednesday. Verdict: my eyes have gotten worse and I should get new glasses, but the change isn't enough to explain the headaches I've been having lately.

Along with giving me my new prescription, the eye doctor decided to mess with my mind. Admittedly that isn't hard to do, but still. He had me look at various objects around the room with my glasses on and with my glasses off and asked what I noticed other than the obvious fact that without my glasses everything was beyond blurry. I said that the objects appeared a bit bigger without my glasses on but that I've always just put that down to the blurriness making the edges indistinct and making me think things were bigger. He said the opposite is true. Because of how bad my eyes are, having my lenses far enough from my eyes to be in glasses sitting on my nose is causing a distortion in things and that with my glasses on I see the world about 11% smaller than it actually is. Seriously. My entire world view has just shifted because I now know that everything in the universe is 11% bigger than I think it is. How crazy is that? Not to mention, he was very precise. 11%. No round to about 10%. 11%.

The doctor's purpose in telling me this was to make a pitch for contacts. He said lots of people with eyes as bad as mine prefer contacts because getting the lens closer to the eye gets rid of that distorting effect and you see the world as it really is rather than this 11% smaller business. I've tried contacts twice and both times it sucked royally. Of course, the last time was probably 7 or 8 years ago and technology has improved, but I think I'm still going to hold off. Maybe after I get out of grad school and get a full time job with a regular salary, even if I don't have vision benefits, I'll think about it. Of course, today I went glasses shopping and that nearly made me reconsider. Apparently when my eyes got a little worse this time I crossed some magic threshold and now I can't get good prescription sunglasses. I spent three hours today shopping for glasses and many places simply don't make sunglasses as strong as I need them. The places that can do it can only do bare minimum, none of the special polycarb thinner lenses or anti-glare coatings or any of that, and it is still astronomically expensive. I ordered glasses and sunglasses today from two different places but I'm seriously considering returning the sunglasses. I've got 90 days to make up my mind. My sister is going to check someplace in Houston where I've gotten glasses before to see what they can do with my 'script. I've had really good luck with them having better options on my syper thick glasses, so hopefully they'll be able to do it and I can just keep using my old sunglasses until I go home since my eyes didn't change that much. Even if they can't do it, I might cancel the sunglasses order because it was so expensive for something that isn't the ideal and I really think I can keep using the old sunglasses since I don't need them for reading. Or maybe I'll just live with dorky clip-ons or something.

In the meantime, I'll be over in the corner staring at objects while lifting my glasses on and off to watch as the world magically shrinks and expands.


train_lindz at 8:38 pm on 03 September 2010 (UTC) (Link)
Like you, my vision is absolutely terrible, and I notice a huge difference between when my glasses are on versus off in terms of size of things, as well as glasses vs. contacts. Its STRANGE. I remember reading a study somewhere about baseball players having to relearn basic skills for the sport when they went from glasses to contacts/LASIK. They did so quickly, but the change in their perception was just so different they had to adapt.
bratty_jedi at 9:27 pm on 03 September 2010 (UTC) (Link)
I honestly had noticed this before but I really thought I was just crazy or it was just the blurriness making me think things were bigger. Now that I've had it explained to me I'm wondering why I never took it more seriously before because it is a rather large difference. I'm kind of freaking out about it.

I could totally see it messing up ball players and the like. There are lots of little times when I've had trouble IDing things in the distance compared to others and now I'm wondering if that 11% size difference is the cause.
godricgal at 12:23 am on 04 September 2010 (UTC) (Link)
I've never noticed the bigger/smaller thing at all before, but I just experimented and it's so true! Looked at my TV with glasses half on, half off - very strange.

I've been thinking about contacts for years, but there's just something about making something touch your eyeball that I can't quite get past. It would solve the constant switching between sunglasses and normal glasses issue. Plus, I'm always finding myself apologising for wearing sunglasses in take-away restaurants because I've forgotten my normal glasses and can't read the menu board without one or t'other.
bratty_jedi at 12:40 pm on 06 September 2010 (UTC) (Link)
Whew. I'm glad I'm not the only one who'd never really noticed this.

I never minded putting in contacts. I just wasn't comfortable wearing them. My eyes felt dry and I kind of think I had a problem with wind on my eyeballs. I'm so used to my glasses blocking out everything that it just felt weird. I also think there is a possibility that many of my problem are in my head since I've had glasses since I was 6 and they are kind of a security blanket and I kind of feel like I'm not me if I don't have them.
littlepixiechic at 1:42 am on 08 September 2010 (UTC) (Link)
Now I'm sitting here looking at things through my glasses and then taking them off to see if they look different. I'll probably waste at least half an hour doing this.

I personally dislike contacts, mainly because the first day is always fine, then they start bothering my eyes, and by day three of wearing them the only thing I want to do is pour the rewetting drops in my eyes constantly because they feel so dry and itchy. Although one of my good friends had contacts in high school and they made her eyes itch, but she just got new ones and she loves them to pieces. While I feel shorter when I wear contacts.

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