Lasik Surgery is a True Miracle for this Sacramento City Guide!
Story by Barbara L. Steinberg
You’re in a deep sleep and somewhere through the fog you hear the phone ringing. The phone is always a hand’s reach away, but due to a major case of visual impairment you are groping through the darkness to squelch the sound.
Groggily you answer, “Hello…..” On the other end you hear a voice frantically yelling to get out of the house. Dazed! What? The apartment building next to the house is on fire and they are telling you to get up and get out!
Stunned you scramble, searching for your glasses which are also usually close at hand. Shit! Where are they? It’s dark. Even with lights on it’s hard to see. Finally, implements of sight are located and on your face. Racing down the stairs and out the door you see the street is full of emergency crews….firefighters, police, EMTs….and a crowd of neighbors.
The apartment building was a loss, your house was saved, but a major decision was made that night. Lasik surgery! You are not waiting any longer. Legally blind or something close to that, you can’t see without contacts or glasses. You probably haven’t had 20/20 vision since you were born – your first pair of blue sparkly, cat-eyed glasses purchased somewhere around eight or nine years old. Those were something else! And contact lenses since you were 14…so all told, more than 46 years of visual impairment.
For years I had thought about Lasik surgery.Despite all of the great PR, I was still afraid. You know, what if…? Mistakes do happen. My Sacramento eye-care professional said to wait — there’s always some latest, greatest improvement just around the corner. Friends had the surgery back in the days when you had to cross the Canadian border for corrective surgery because the US just couldn’t get it together. They were thriled with the results. Even in those days, Sacramento-based Griffen & Reed Eye Care were leading the charge for the contact-lens and glass-wearing population. But now I am finally ready to take make the leap and others have recommended them…highly!
Okay, I’m going to keep this short. After 40 years of contact lenses it takes a few weeks to get my eyes normal. The tests and measurements all seem very Sci-Fi but what do I know. Who invents this stuff? The staff is all great. Very reassuring. And I am not at all worried.
Finally, after weeks of preparation the big day arrives. I am not even nervous. What’s up with that? Check-in at 12:50 p.m. Around 1:40 p.m. I am finally summoned from the group of waiting hopefuls. Dr. Reed talks me through the procedure. It’s only at the moment of truth that I have a flash of, “What the Hell am I doing?” But then… seriously…in minutes…it’s all over. I was home and in bed to rest by 2:25 p.m.
What more can I say? You see the smiling results and seven days later a gold star for my 20/20! I opted for monocular vision — one eye is for distance and one for reading. So far, so good. My vision will continue to improve, but for the moment it’s just unfreaking-beliveable. I am walking around without glasses or contacts for the first time in decades. I still find myself reaching for my trusted spectacles each morning when I rise. And sometimes I think I feel the phantom presence of my tiny contact lenses. But it’s just my own hazel eyes seeing crystal clear for the first time…maybe ever!
Yes, the Sacramento City Guide can see you!