Friday, March 16, 2012

Zone of Blindness

It used to be that I'd finish a novel in a week or two, sometimes less. Nowadays, my reading has gone down drastically. Two reasons I can think of: today's fiction just doesn't appeal much to me anymore, now that I've been behind the curtain; and two, as much as I hate to admit it, I can't see as well as I used to.

I got so worried about my eyesight that I went to an ophthalmologist. After a battery of tests, he gave me the verdict: nothing out of the ordinary, just plain old presbyopia. In other words, I'm getting old, and I can't see as well as I used to.

Presbyopia is the progressive degeneration of vision for close ranges. This happens as the eye muscles weaken with age, and therefore is unable to focus properly at close distances. So my regular glasses are fine for walking or driving, and for looking at things far away; for reading, not so much.

My presbyopia has introduced what I like to call as my "zone of blindness". Any closer than 30cm, and I can't focus properly with my glasses on; but without my glasses, I can only make out 12-point font from at most 15cm. Between those two ranges, reading is just uncomfortable. But as it happens, that's about the comfortable distance from which I can hold a book, or write with a pen on paper.

Ayayay...I'm getting old.