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Sight For Sore Eyes

Yael Schuster

Irritated eyes made contact lenses impossible for me to wear. Glasses were just plain bothersome. With laser surgery, my problem was solved. Is laser vision correction right for you too?

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

After years of wearing contact lenses, my eyes were starting to rebel. Each passing week saw my tolerance for lenses dwindle, until every blink caused discomfort. My red, irritated eyes were so dry that no amount of wetting drops could slake their thirst. Something had to change.

Giant papillary conjunctivitis, proclaimed Dr. Tzvi Gottesman, my optometrist. I had developed bumps under my eyelids from long-term contact lens use. Ever-patient and determined, Dr. G. experimented with various lenses and different eye drops. Yet as doggedly as we pursued them, those stubborn bumps refused to budge.

Even my father, expert ophthalmologist Dr. Raymond Reich of Brooklyn, New York, could not make the nasty little bumps go away as long as I continued to wear lenses. This was the first time ever that he couldn’t do the impossible for me.

I tried pushing vanity aside. Is it so terrible to wear glasses the rest of my life? I asked myself. True, I find glasses cumbersome, especially after being used to lenses, and I don’t love the way they slide down my nose while exercising. But things could definitely be worse. To make peace with what seemed the inevitable, I consoled myself with a new pair. I loved my uber-cool new frames.

That is, until the next simchah I attended. As trendy as they were, the color and style were all wrong for elegant evening wear, like wearing a ball gown with sneakers. This just wasn’t working.

For some time, a radio advertisement refrain would occasionally buzz around my head. These days, the refrain had grown to a steady hum: “Do you want to throw away your glasses? You can, with laser vision correction.” It sounded like a dream — but would I dare?

It was an insignificant comment that was the catalyst for my major decision. I was sitting in shul Purim morning, waiting for Megillah reading to start, when the friend next to me turned to another friend and commented, “I heard you did your eyes.”

She “did” her eyes? What could that possibly mean? It turns out she had LASIK, the most popular form of laser vision correction. I stared at her long and hard: We had gone to high school together. We davened in the same shul. Our kids were the same ages. If she could do it, why couldn’t I?

That’s how I found myself in the office of Dr. Ken Moadel, a leading laser vision correction specialist. His gentle demeanor combined with vast experience and credentials immediately put me at ease. I was on my way.


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