About three years ago, an observant neighbor noticed our eldest child’s eyes were both turning inward. I dismissed it to the neighbor, but passed along the mention to my husband. I hadn’t known that he had problems with his eyes when he was younger. He immediately jumped into the situation. Our pediatrician immediately referred us to a pediatric ophthalmologist in a big city about 1 1/2 hours away. The experience there was horrific and I am reduced to tears remembering the impatience of the doctor, how he didn’t listen to a word I said, the screaming of our child as she had to be held down to get drops in her eyes, the fifteen minutes in the waiting room calming her down, and the screaming when she realized she had to go back into the back office again. We came away scarred – with a prescription for glasses in our hands.
Once back at home, I called a local optometrist who attends our church. He assured me that he could treat our child locally and she did not need to go back to that doctor’s office again. Our local doctor is patient, understanding, and very hands-on. He answers all our questions about our daughter’s accomodative esotropia (intermittant turning in of the eyes). Admittedly, my husband is much more educated about her condition. I’m the one who doesn’t think of the tough questions or question any decisions. I just know when she wears her glasses, her eyes don’t turn inward much anymore.
We used to go every few months for an eye check and new prescription. Due to a slip of my memory, what was supposed to be a six-month interval became a 10+ month interval between appointments. On Wednesday, I dutifully brought the four children for her latest appointment. Her far vision has been corrected as much as it can be, but the doctor found that her close vision was blurry.
In the midst of trying to keep the toddler and crawler busy, my ears perked up. He held some lenses in front of her glasses and she reread the close eye chart. This time, it appeared, she didn’t have nearly the trouble as last time and got many more correct. The light bulb went off in my head.
You see, our eldest child’s reading took off in the middle of last year and I couldn’t keep her from reading books late into the night with her reading lamp in her room. Then, after about three months, I would check on her to find her asleep almost immediately – no book in sight. She preferred to go straight to bed to reading. I thought perhaps she was just tired. Instead, was she starting to have trouble focusing on the words and it was now too much trouble to read her precious books?
The doctor prescribed progressive lenses – something neither my husband nor I have any experience with. My husband had ten or more questions that I had not thought to ask. I have been told she will not have any trouble after the first few days adjusting to them. I am apprehensive, but hopeful.
When I was looking up some links for this blog article, I ran across several “success stories” about Vision Therapy. I know my husband has asked about therapy before, but I don’t remember much about the answer. I plan on bringing the subject back up when we go to pick up her new progressive lenses.
I want what is best for my child. Doesn’t every parent?