I’ve been myopic since I was a very little girl. My first pair of spectacles arrived well before my tenth birthday, and I was wearing gas permeable contact lenses by the age of fourteen. I’m so short-sighted now that, much to my horror, I was told at my last optician’s appointment that I now qualify for free lenses.
I tend to wear daily disposables, as my eyes are very photo sensitive, and I need to wear sunglasses on even cloudy days but, after years of contact wearing, it has been borne in on me that I must have entire, uninterrupted days of eyeglass wearing to give my oxygen-starved eyes a break.
So these are my new specs, courtesy of the nice people at Vision Express, who are the sole stockists of Ralph Lauren prescription eyewear in the UK. I prefer a heavy frame, so these are actually from the Ralph Lauren Polo Mens range.
And why am I telling you about my fantastic new eyewear now? I’m going to be in glasses for a few days at least because last week’s boring plague-visitation upon the house of Wilkins was neatly followed by an eye infection which saw me arrive at the Royal Free Hospital at 3am on Saturday morning, delirious with pain and lack of sleep, as my left eye poured tears, became increasing photo-sensitive and felt as though large pieces of grit were lodged under the eyelid. (Because I’ve historically had eye issues I now know to just get to the hospital STAT if irrigation doesn’t clear the grit feeling.)
I was in A&E (the ER for my American readers) until 7am, beside myself with exhaustion. Then back home again after seeing two lovely doctors, for two hours sleep and then a return to the hospital for the weekend emergency eye clinic at 1030hrs on Saturday am.
The diagnosis at the moment is an eye ulcer (a bacterial infection of a corneal abrasion, probably caused by grit under a contact lens, which can lead to blindness if not treated promptly. The hospital eye docs – and I have this from the horse’s mouth – take these ulcers extremely seriously, so do take note: if you wear contacts and the teary-gritty-photo-sensitive thing starts and it’s not as far as you can see caused by grit, – do not faff about with over the counter eye creams and the such-like, or weeklong waits for a GP appointment, as you could do serious harm to your vision in the long run.
Anyway, I spent Saturday and Sunday administering eye drops on the hour EVERY hour through the day AND night all weekend. That’s been all the fun, and I am very bored with being unwell. (Sorry Holl.)
I’ll get a progress report at the Royal Free at 8am tomorrow (Monday) and hopefully the ulcer will have shrunk . Although it may be a flare up of the Thygeson’s Superficial Punctate Keratopathy I was finally diagnosed with in 2008 in New York, which can be mistaken for an ulcer, as mine were three times in a row between 2007 and 2008. The only problem is that SPK is treated with steroids, so if it is the hourly drops will have been a waste of time. Joy.
Here for your amusement is me (coincidentally) after the SS09 Ralph Lauren show in the back of a town car in New York in September 2008, when I was a fashion editor at The Wall Street Journal, suffering from a Thygeson’s flare up and unwilling to be seen in public with a red and inflamed eye. (Before selfies were even a thing, apparently I was taking them, something I am now glad of when it comes to remembering the past. But thank f&ck that this was pre-Twitter and that the only real street style photographer back then was The Sartorialist, who I remember quite clearly bouncing around outside the venue like a crazed elf at this particular show.)