28 October 2015

Improving my eyesight: Beginning of the journey

The glasses I have had for probably over 10 years now

The first time I noticed myself squinting was probably around the age of 10, about three years into primary school. And as a kid I was pretty sure that the education system enforces too much close-up activites that promotes eye problems. In fact I just found out during an online reasearch today that Singapore has one of the highest rates of myopia among its citizens as compared to any other countries in the world. And that's a bad sign.

Naturally genetics do play a role but in combination with the environment, if one who is prone to myopia gets exposed to myopia-triggering situations like reading, hours and hours of writing and using close-up media like tablets, computers and smartphones then myiopia is pretty much inevitable. Which is the case with me.

I was so close to ordering a new pair of annually disposable coloured contact lenses today until something hit me in the gut as if telling me it was the wrong thing to do. I paused for a couple of seconds and knowing myself, I tend to trust my gut feeling more because they make me think and reflect my actions or the actions of others.
So I hit the cancel button and didn't order anything. I realized that I've been wanting to improve my eyesight for so long now and always gave up because I never thought it was possible. Even though I had researched it a and read about people who have avhieved this I didn't quite believe that I could doo.

So I searched for "reverse myopia" on Google and came across many videos and methods like the Bates method which were informative but not quite the specific information I was looking for. Until I came across this talk below explaining concrete methods of the approach. I'm surprised by how it seems too good to be true but because of the scientific explanations behind it, it makes a lot of sense. And it gave me that last few drops of hope I needed, to get this going.

So I took off my glasses and knew from that moment on that I'm going to reduce my dependence on it, one task and one moment, one distance, at a time. As I#m typing this I'm doing it without my glasses, I am sitting 30 cm away from the computer screen and the words are blurry but still clear enough for me to recognize them. And it's the beginning of me practicing and retraining my eyes to getting used to new habits. Don't be surprised if I didn't correct any spelling mistakes here because I might just have to accept them for now.

My eyes have been so crippled for many years and I realize that it's going to take just as long if I'm not that lucky for it to show any signs of improvement. Without surgery it's going to take a lot of time, patience and presistence. But my motivation is being able to see details again, facial expressions, tiny branches on the trees and reading the road signs.

My next step is to get a pait of glasses with a weaker prescription than the ones I currently have and to allow my eyes to gradually adjust and focus a bit at a time ('print pushing'). And if my eyesight improves over time, I will be getting another pair of glasses with even lesser prescription and keep repeating this process until I no longer need any. The interesting thing is that close up reading/activities caused my eyes to stop focusing on distant objects. But to keep reading at an increased distance at a time ('active focussing') - according to this method - can help reverse the problem by just having you move closer of further to the object of focus without putting any strain on your eyes So I'm going to give it a go and see what changes.

I do know that my eyes are so extremely dependent on glasses to correct the eyesight and it's so hard to start doing things without them. It feels so awkward, so frustrating and extremely tiring. But this is what change takes - moving out of the comfort zone.

I figured that documenting the entire process over time is going to be interesting and is going to allow me to observe any changes a lot better. The first couple of changes I noticed now already is that after an hour of not wearing glasses I am able to read my text messages at a farther angle than usual. The focus fluctuate a lot so I am able to see normal-sized text at 30 cm away for a bit and then it gets blurry again. It's not a big change yet but there is something happening already in the first hour.

Habits have to change...
Some habits would also have to change, I have learned., like allowing myself to go out more and just see farther away even though the images are still blurry and doubled. I should read comfortably at a close-up angle any longer, instead I should be increasing the distance between text and eyes gradually.
I would need to take more frequent breaks away from my close-up activities because what do you know, I am still in school and still caught in the myopia-triggerring educational system and so I'd have to be awae of how and what my eyes are focussing on and how long.

Diet would have to change...
Mentioned in the talk in the video above is also that consuming carbohydrates have furthermore led to the issue, as to the fact that it also leads to many other kinds of diseases humans (and teeth) are suffering from today (just no one wants to really believe it, because if we all did then the medical/pharmaceutical industries would die). Anyway, in leau of this knowledge, I am determined to cut back on that.

The right mindset is important...
This isn't supposed to be a chore but something that I should integrate in my daily lifetyle. To have fun with it rather, than to take it as a burden. So yeah... let's do this. I now have a reason to go out - to stimulate my eyes, to eat healthier. :)
I realized that there is nothing better to achieve in life than to work on something that has a chance to improve. Especially if that something has something to do with you. With me.
God knows how much I would want to see the details of this world again without the aid of glasses.

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