This was an ad-libbed role play between two sixth grade students today:
S1: May I help you?
S2: Yes. How much are the flowers?
S1: They’re five dollars.
S2: That’s a little expensive. Discount?
S2: Ohmygot! (smacks own head) I’ll take them.
This is how I feel about LASIK surgery. It goes against my squeamish feelings about eyes being touched, particularly by sharp objects. But – ohmygot – I’ll take it.
I latched onto the idea of having LASIK in Korea one long afternoon at work. I was fed up with lesson planning and pretending to absorb the Korean language, so I started doing ‘research’ on the old internets. Turns out that the LASIK technology in Korea is top-notch, but the prices are half of what they are in the States.
For days, I was lost in the fantasy of being able to wake up and see. No glasses at night, no bloody toric lenses during the day, no saline solution, no traveling with extra toiletries to compensate for my blurry vision. Based on the expert advice of people just like me who posted their opinions on online forums, I chose Dream Eye Center in Myeongdong, Seoul. One, because I knew how to get there, and two, because I could go shopping after my follow up appointments.
I had to remove my contact lenses for one week before the consultation. This really confused my students.
“Teacher, glasses!” was the usual exclamation.
“Yes!” I would reply. Then the student and I would stare at each other, mutual language exhausted.
“You look smarter,” Jared said. I thought he was just being a jackass until Mrs. J told me the same thing.
My consultation was just under two hours, with an optometrist who spoke excellent English. Every time she told me I had healthy eyes I beamed with happiness.
“Normal corneas are about 520 microns,” she said. “Yours are very thick, about 550.”
I felt so proud, as if I’d had something to do with my corneal microns.
It wasn’t until this moment, when I googled ‘normal corneal thickness’, that I discovered that normal caucasian corneas are about 550 microns. Asian eyes typically have much thinner corneas. Looks like my eyes aren’t that special back home, just here.
I also met my potential surgeon, who congratulated me on my good fortune of having brown eyes.
“I believe that Asians have stronger eyes for surgery because of the dark color,” he said. “Blue eyes, a little bit weaker. You have almost brown eyes, that is good.”
That sounded…medically informed.
Then he said, “I have no concerns to recommend you for LASIK surgery.”
My surgery is happening this Friday evening at 7:40PM. I am pumped to the max. So pumped that I am spewing phrases like ‘pumped to the max.’ Those of you who have been wearing contacts or glasses since the age of 12 (or younger) know where I am coming from.
I made the horrific mistake of watching a video on this guy’s blog, which briefly put me off. But then I thought about the benefits. And donating my glasses to charity, or wherever they go. And my remaining contact lenses. And seeing freely. I feel like a satisfied customer and I haven’t even bought anything yet.
Ohmygot! I can’t wait.