Hello, my friends, hello! It has been almost a week and a half since we’ve had a visit. It has been Way Too Long – I have missed you!
Today, I’m really just checking in with you, to let you know I’m still functioning. I’ll share a little something that I’ve been sort of working on. And for those who are interested, I’ll fill you in on the details about how things are going with the Eyes. I’ve had many requests for more details, coming especially from those of you who are facing the option of cataract surgery. So I’ll touch on my experiences so far.
I’ve been debating about going into detail, as it’s not really On Topic – except for the fact that, without eyes, not too many of us would be enjoying handwork, would we? Talk about essential tools!
Tomorrow, I’ll be a week out from getting Eye #2 fixed, and I’m not quite comfortably-healed from that yet. But I’ve been able to do a little stitching on non-fine embroidery work.
The angel above is part of a design set conceived last year, only the set didn’t come about in time for last Christmas. So my plan was to launch it for this Christmas, only I haven’t finished stitching the models yet. Will they be ready by the end of October? Probably! There’s a lot that has to happen between now and then, but … I have high hopes!
This set fits the style of the Christmas Cheer and Let it Snow ready-to-stitch towels. It’s called Glad Tidings. It features angels and doves in a specifically-Christmas theme, rather than a more general winter theme.
So far, I like it. I’ve found a few things I’ll have to adjust, but it’s been nice to be able to stitch on something. I picked it up this weekend, just to see how things would go, and with the aid of some 2.5x reading glasses, I was able to make a little progress.
I find I can’t spend a long stretches of time stitching right now, but a little is better than none.
About the Eyes
(If this information doesn’t interest you, please feel free to skip it!)
Cataract surgery is one of the most commonly performed surgeries in the US. And while my optometrist says there’s very little to worry about with it, it is still something to consider carefully, because it is surgery and you only have one set of eyes.
Most people that I have heard from or that I know personally have proclaimed that cataract surgery is the best thing they did for their eyes – at least by the time everything was properly healed and all the adjustments were made in whatever vision aid they still needed.
I was still worried about it, though, because … well, I only have one set of eyes! And even if they could still do most things, if they couldn’t do what I need them to do – detailed needlework – then there goes my livelihood.
I won’t go into detail about the surgery. If you’re considering cataract surgery, your optometrist will tell you about it.
The most notable difference for me in the outcome of the surgery is the amount of light that’s coming into my eyes and the incredible difference in color. The only way I can explain or describe the difference is this:
Imagine you are sitting at the bottom of a pond with your eyes open, looking through murky water with a warm-spectrum (that’s the really yellow / orange) LED light lighting the water. That was my vision before the surgery. It was dim and yellowed, and I had to have enormous amounts of light on to be able to see moderately well.
The new eyes are like looking through a sparkly bright window into a world lit up with over-bright daylight bulbs, with vivid color everywhere. The color spectrum seems to lean more towards blue for me now. Before, everything had more of a warm red / yellow cast to it.
Of course, I didn’t realize the extent of the dim color alteration from the cataracts until after the first eye was done. Then, I could switch back and forth between the old eye and the new eye and see how vastly different each eye was seeing things.
It’s not always about color and light, though. For many people, cataract surgery restores their vision so that they don’t have to wear corrective lenses anymore, or so that they are only subject to wearing readers.
I’ll still be wearing glasses for both distant and near vision. My distance vision was improved somewhat, but not completely. But my close-up vision is completely different. For all practical purposes, it is gone. Before, I wore progressive lenses with a very light prescription at the base for reading. Before, I could take my glasses off and hold things close and see them clearly. The color may not have been right, but I could see even the finest threads in the weave of fine fabrics.
Now, I have to hold things out beyond an arm’s length to see anything clearly, and at that point, it’s too far away to see details. So a reading prescription is essential. Keep in mind, too, though, that my eyes have not healed completely yet.
I still have some jiggling in the lens in Eye #2, so I’m getting some light refraction on the lens. This phenomenon was a huge surprise (and worry!) to me, but it is something that goes away as the eye heals. It’s almost like wearing a contact lens that has a wrinkle in it, that keeps catching the light. It does go away – it is no longer happening in Eye #1, which has been healing longer.
I’m still on drops, so I won’t be able to get the correct glasses I need until after the drop schedule has been over for a week. That will be well into October.
I had the impression that I would be able to get my new prescription a week after the second surgery, so this was a big disappointment. At that point, I will have been “out of vision” for almost two months, which is somewhat problematic for me. So if your distance isn’t going to be mostly restored, that’s something you need to discuss with your optometrist if it is problematic for you. Maybe there’s a solution. I didn’t think to discuss it in completely detail, as I didn’t really know what questions to ask.
This week when I head back for a follow-up, I’ll be discussing a temporary solution for glasses that will get me through the next month, if possible. They might not be perfect, but if they can give me better vision for the next month, that would be great. Then I’ll just get new lenses when the eyes are tested again in the middle of October.
So that’s where I am. Is the whole ordeal worth it? I am highly confident that it will be, once the eyes heal and I we achieve the correct solutions I need for my new vision. Certainly, when it comes to light and to color, it is worth it. It’s such a gift to be able to see the beautiful world that we live in, and to see it in full color again!
In the meantime, I’m sticking with my old motto: Don’t let what you can’t do keep you from doing what you can. I’m focusing on the things I can do, work-wise, and I’m not worrying about what I can’t do.
Lots of computer work is not an option at the moment. And detailed stitching is not an option. But organization, planning, getting everything ready to put kits together (still waiting on some threads for the Stockings and the Leafy Tree kits) – I can do all that.
I’m also shipping regularly, and the ready-to-stitch towel sets are mostly all available right now, especially autumn and winter designs. So if you’ve been waiting for those and you want to get ahead on Christmas prep or you want to indulge in some autumnal stitching, feel free to check those out!
And finally, the Grapes tutorials will commence again at the end of the week, if all goes as planned. I’m putting together little bits at a time. We’ll get through with that soon – we need to move on to the next project!
See. I can do stuff! Things will be back to running normally on Needle ‘n Thread very soon.
Good to see you again! I hope you’re having a wonderful week!