Stars and Shadows Ain't Good to See By

As someone who has astigmatic myopic eyes, I can still drive without my glasses.  In fact, I can watch TV and live about my regular life without any correction… though I would subject myself to a chunky little migraine at the end of the day, I could still do it if I had to.  I try not to be a little bummed that I’m on the cusp of LASIK (that place where they say: “we may overcorrect you if you go for it”) and recently I’ve realized that often I take for granted how much I can see. 

The picture above is my best friend, Amanda (Mandi, as I like to say).  I remember her wearing glasses when we were kids and knew she wore contacts as an adult but never really understood the impact of her prescription.  Her eye care has been at another facility (because of insurance… I’m sure you can all understand) so I’ve never had the opportunity to see her as a patient, and really when we hang out we’re not talking about work so I never got to know her eyes, per se.  Recently she’s decided to go for a four-part combination procedure to battle this beast:

-14.75 -1.25 x 021

-14.50   -2.25 x 159

Obviously, neither an ideal candidate for LASIK nor ideal for Visian ICL.  Solution?  Clear Advantage Vision Correction Center ( has taken on her challenge and is doing a four part procedure:

Step 1: Pre-Visian ICL Iridotomy

The ophthalmologist uses a YAG laser to make small openings near the edge of the iris to allow the fluid in your eye to circulate around the lens. 

  • Apparently, this is the most uncomfortable of all the procedures.

Step 2: Pre-LASIK Corneal Flap

The creation of the flap puts too much pressure on the eye post-Visian, so the eye is prepped for LASIK during this step.

  • I attended this appointment with Mandi… I was in the waiting room for about five minutes… seriously. 

Step 3: Visian ICL Implant

The ophthalmologist creates small openings at the base of the cornea and inserts a corrective lens.  As the lens is inserted, it unfolds in the eye and the corners are tucked in behind the iris – making it invisible to the outside world!

  • This is only correcting Mandi to around a -2.00 sphere with her astigmatism so that they don’t risk over correcting her with the LASIK.  ALSO, this third surgery is happening on her and her husband's THIRD anniversary!

Step 4: LASIK

The already created corneal flap is lifted back and the cornea is reshaped to finish off correcting the eye. 


After worrying that if zombies ever attacked she’d be screwed, Mandi will finally be able to wake up in the morning and not have to hold her phone two centimeters away from her face to see the time.  She will also be able to take a shower and see to make sure she’s putting the correct shampoo in her hair without guessing the right smudgy color (thanks to her husband, Adam for not moving anything in the shower during this period of not wearing her contacts).  Step 4 will happen sometime early this month and I’m more than excited for her.  Her prescription will be close to mine after the ICL implant and I keep telling her that even I can see the guide on the TV… which alone is a fantasy for her.  A fantasy that will be a reality; a (very soon) reality with ultimately better vision than my own.


Shout-out to Mark Twain for giving my blog a title.