As we shuffled into our rudimental classroom, there were whispers of some radical change soon to materialise in the confines of our diminutive year group. With a spring in my step, I rushed over to my best friend, anxious to unravel the plausible secrets behind what change would grace the presence of our pre-pubescent selfs. Was there a new girl? A disco? A mufti day? An excursion? Our jabbering was eventually interrupted by the deep, sonorous voice of our teacher who, with guitar in tow, apologised for his lateness; gently urging us to return to our own seats. I eagerly strode to my allocated desk in the front row — conveniently positioned next to the door — hoping to report on the scandalising tête-à-tête of the exhilarating school yard. Per usual, my daydreaming set in — horses, horses and more horses — until suddenly something my teacher said struck accord in me.
“Table Change,” waffled Mr. Brincat.
See, for most 10-year-olds, this wouldn’t make an inkling of a difference to either their education or general wellbeing, but I was different. Nervously, I dragged my desk to my newly allocated spot, which happened to be at the very back of the room. While others were cheering, I was fearing the absolute worst. Like a stranger in the night, I solemnly raised my head, eyeing out the cursory words being spelt out on our newly arrived whiteboard.
No. This can not be happening.
I couldn’t read it.
It was all a blur.
Quite literally, a blur.
My war against glasses was officially set to commence. While squinting worked in the beginning, it was defeated by my dwindling grades, coupled with my teacher’s erroneous assumption that I was copying the work of other students. From the moment I set foot back into my meagre classroom, however, I got stares – right, left and centre. From the gasps of my friends to the snorts of the boys, I was in trouble. It’s funny how such a little thing like glasses can impact on the way people perceive you, and dare I say it, your popularity. I mean, at one point somebody stole my glasses for a laugh. Let’s just say that such an event did not go down well with my mum. And no, I did not end up getting them back. Seriously, don’t ask.
Why am I writing this, you ask? Well, tomorrow I will be undergoing PRK Corrective Eye Surgery. No longer will I have to wear specially-made goggles at the beach or spend ages putting contact lenses in for a special occasion; I’ll finally be able to see. Basically, this procedure is very similar to LASIK, but doesn’t require a corneal flap. In layperson’s terms, it’s less invasive than its highly-discussed counterpart. The primary difference, however, is that it takes a bit longer to recover from PRK than LASIK. While I do understand how important one’s eye sight is and that these procedures may come with dire consequences, but I’m ready to take the chance. Am I nervous? Yes. Am I going to pull out? Absolutely not. I have been waiting to be a candidate for this procedure for eleven years and was thrilled to hear that I was finally ready to take the plunge. Not only is an ophthalmologist conducting the surgery, but he is using the most technologically-advanced laser on the market.
Finally, I’ll be able to see the world without frames. No longer will I have to constantly clean them when they get dirty or purchase prescription sunglasses for almost triple the price of regular spectacles. People will finally be able to see my eyes, instead of focussing on giant frames that cover half of my face. Yes, that may sound quite obnoxious, but it’s true. This procedure is going to change my life, and I hope with all my heart that it’s for the better. I understand that by the time I turn 40, I may need reading glasses, which I am completely open to. At least I won’t have to wear them for days on end.
Tomorrow is the big day. It has almost arrived. I will not dwell too much longer on the ins and outs of the procedure, and instead, inform you of my own personal experience following the corrective eye surgery.
Wish me luck.