Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Vision-The Eye Chart

The Eye Chart
January 8, 2008
5.25" x 8.25"
Yesterday, I sat in my aunt's eye doctors' examining room with her while she had her annual eye exam. My aunt is in a wheel chair, so she needed to have someone there with her. She has one bad eye, that she truly can't see out of, and was using only reading glasses until last year. We determined that she can see much better with glasses, so they gave her some to wear all the time.
They went through putting drops in her eyes,and covering each eye, shining a light in her eyes. All the things they do in an eye exam. They had to keep directing her where to look. But, she actually read the letters as they flashed on a mirror beside where I was sitting.
I looked, too, to see what she was looking at and even checked the wall behind her, where the letters were displayed on a wall.
I was getting a little distressed. I didn't even think to close each eye and look, but I did try to see the test she was taking. I couldnt' make out any letters, while my aunt was able to read some of the letters.
The above painting shows several of the rows of letters that was shown to her, as I saw them.
For the large letters, I saw a simple diamond ring with a cold, blue stone in it. On the opposite end, there was a gift wrapped package, with a red ribbon and a bow on top. In the center, there was an abstract purple shape. In another row of letters of a different size, there seemed to be stylized shapes that resembled flowing letters, but with holes in them, like lace. One seemed to have something like a broken pencil or popsicle stick on one side of it. The smaller lines of letters were just a bunch of scratchy marks on gray.
I do realize that this is leaning a bit, and that my lines are not straight. But remember that I was sitting to one side, out of the way, looking into a mirror in a darkened room. Things were not straight or even as I looked into that mirror.
This reminded me of the eye exam I had a year ago, to renew my drivers license. Two eye doctors told me that my eyes were good enough to pass that drivers test. But, when I got there, all I could see was a black background with some green squiggles instead of letters. ( I have a painting about that called "Vision-Ready To Go" in my archives on the sidebar.) When I got my Lucentis injection, just before that exam at the DPS, and as soon as I was pronounced ready to go, I could see the eye chart in the room. I could make out letters, although some were blurry and overlapped, but I could still make them out. So why couldn't I see any letters on the eye test at the DPS office?
I wondered, yesterday, if this was my imagination, if something was not connecting with my brain, or is it the Macular Degeneration and cataracts. Maybe he was giving her a different kind of test, like they might give to children, where there are objects instead of letters. But, no, that couldn't be. She was telling the doctor what letters were there, and he was reacting to that.
So, I knew there were letters that I should be seeing.
"One of these days, I may have to get these cataracts taken care of, " I commented to the tech lady or whatever her job is called now. (I would have said nurse, but there are so many different people working in doctors' offices these days, that I don't know who is what unless I ask them.)
I expected her to say something like, "Oh, do you have a problem? We do that here." Instead, she just said a disinterested "Oh".
I didn't mention the AMD or ask any questions. After all, this was not the doctor I had been to. But, I really don't have a doctor, and just saw a doctor that I had gone to many years before when I thought I needed glasses last year. And he immediately sent me to a Retina Specialist, who won't see me anymore due to his demand for payment of thousands of dollars, before each visit, or much better insurance than I have. So, I'm kind of shopping around to see who might be interested in me and my health, at an affordable price. I guess that person no longer exists.
I didn't mention the fact that their letters looked like objects to me, but now I am wondering why I saw things the way that I did.
"Okay, we'll see you next year!" the tech lady said as she wheeled my aunt to the door.
As I stood up, I could see some of the letters still reflected on the wall. Those were thick, black letters, and not a sign of an object, or anything that looked like an object among them. And, there certainly was no color.
Maybe, in my mind, I just made up a more interesting eye chart. I'll bet I could make a story out of the eye chart as I saw it yesterday.
Look back in my Archives for more of my art work and experiences with Macular Degeneration. All of those posts are prefaced with the word "Vision".
Also, read my post from yesterday where I began telling about a website that has an online test for Macular Degeneration. I have a link to MyVisionTest in my sidebar under Eye Sites.
Virginia Vaughan has announced that her book of some of her paintings about "The Last Year On The Farm" is out and ready to be ordered. See her blog or website for more information. I have a link to her site under Artists and Authors in my sidebar.
I was struck by the work of artist Russell Baker as I looked at various artists' blogs today. He does lovely work and has some of the most compelling paintings of dogs that you will see. In some of his work, he shows dogs that have encountered terrible circumstances. Some of the stories will just tear at your heart, especially if you love animals and life. I've put a link to Russ, as well, for you to take a look at.
I hope that you enjoy my blog, and that you will pass it on to others who might be interested. Please let me know if you find something of interest to you. And be sure to stop by and sign my Guest Book at the very bottom of my page. Scroll all the way down to the very end of my blog.

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