the lasik surgery went GREAT! it was very smooth, painless and really cool! the operating room has glass windows so my parents were able to watch and take some pictures! here’s the run down (note: there are some surgery details below so don’t read too much if you get squeamish with eye stuff)..
we left the house around 7:30am thursday morning, made a quick stop at einstein bagels (the pumpkin bagels and pumpkin cream cheese are back! woot!!), and headed up to Axis Eye Institute in Scottsdale.
in some ways, this was the realization of a dream for me. i can remember hearing about this thing called lasik probably about 10 years ago, when it was much more new. and oh, how i dreamed about not having to put contacts in every morning… about being able to swim without being terrified i might lose a contact…about waking up in the middle of the night and actually being able to see what time it was without squinting and guessing!
i will confess – i was much more nervous than i let on. outwardly i was very calm and collected but i had several “freak out” moments in my head. i mean – this is a big deal!! but everyone at the axis office was really calm and acted like it was totally no big deal. which, to them it isn’t really… i mean, they do this all the time. so it was great that they were all super casual and matter-of-fact about all that we did.
they did a quick eye test, took some updated photos of my eyes and before i know it, the numbing drops were in. and let me tell you – having numb eyes is a very strange sensation! the drops stung every so slightly but that went away quickly. i told the assistant to give me as many of those drops as was safe – i didn’t want to feel a thing! i think by the time i walked out of the office she had given me 8 doses! haha!
the first thing they had to do was create the corneal flap on my eye (which they do with a laser). that was a relatively quick procedure. they had my eye propped open with this plastic thing that sort of suction-cupped onto my eye. like i said before, it was painless – i only felt some pressure. when they were creating the flap on my left eye, it was the weirdest sensation because it felt like my eyes were closed because i couldn’t physically keep them open, yet one of them was totally opened. it was crazy.
after creating the corneal flap, some more drops went in – these ones caused my eyes to dilate. i sat in a dark room listening to my ipod for about 45 minutes while my eyes dilated to HUGE black circles. i seriously looked like the white witch from the narnia movie – my eyes looked nearly black!
then it was time for the laser. i laid down on the operating table and the doctor sat behind my head. one eye at a time was propped open and the opthamologist opened the previously-created flap. while i focused on the red dot in the machine the laser did its thing! i really didn’t feel much of anything. although i could actually SEE the opthamologist opening the flap in my eye – that was way cool. it actually looked/felt more like he was pushing a layer of water over my eye than anything. i could hear the buzz of the laser and there was a slight smell of what resembled burning hair. it wasn’t gross though. it was just… there. and i could hear the digital voice of the machine saying “70 per cent done.” the whole time the dr and the assistant were talking me through it, saying things like, “you’re doing great. just keep looking at the red dot. almost there. you’re doing fantastic. we’re almost done….” etc, which, even though the procedure was unbelievable fast, it was still REALLY helpful to have them talk me through it every step of the way.
45 seconds later we were switching to the other eye and 45 seconds after that i was done! my eyes felt a bit scratchy and it was really difficult to open them since they were extremely sensitive to lights being still so heavily dilated. but for the few moments that i could force them open, i could definitely see perfectly! but since it felt much more comfortable to just keep my eyes closed, i didn’t try out my new and improved eyeballs too much right then. 🙂 i wore the stylin’ sunglasses they gave me on the drive home though..
they told me not to sleep immediately after the surgery – i don’t quite remember why. since it was nearly impossible to open my eyes, i laid on my bed with my eyes closed for a couple hours listening to adventures in odyssey on my ipod. then i decided that that was ridiculous and i was practically asleep anyway. so i gave in and fell asleep for a couple hours. when i woke up around 4pm all the scratchiness was gone, my eyes had un-dilated and i could see perfectly! it was so cool!
i definitely walked out of that office amazed at the intelligence that God gives to men (and women) to discover and invent such amazing things as lasik surgery. i mean, to spend two hours in scottsdale, 2 minutes under a laser and instantly have perfect vision with practically no recovery is just incredible!
so now i’m supposed to be sleeping in goggles for 5 nights (to prevent me from scratching at or rubbing my eyes in my sleep) – you can interpret “supposed to be” how you like – and i can’t wear mascara for 5 days. why 5? it takes 5 days for the corneal flap to seal back down on my eye and heal. oh and i have 2 types of eye drops (a prescription one and one that is basically liquid prednisone) that i use 4x/day.
but in the meantime i can see wonderfully and have no discomfort whatsoever!