I took a seat at the back of the store, thankfully behind a wall which provided me with some privacy from customers shopping. I placed the tissue which I had used to dab my watery eyes into my bag. With 20 minutes to kill, I pulled out my phone. I scrolled through my feeds, watching them get blurrier with every passing minute.
The office door in front of me opened, and I was finally motioned into a dark examination room. I took a seat on the wooden beech chair, placed my chin onto the little chin rest, propelled my head forward and peered through. I watched as an image of a country road in the desert was swapped out for darkness, save for a green light.
Relax. Nice and wide. Looking at the green light.
I blinked, uncontrollably, somewhat startled by the small puff of air that entered my right eye.
One more time. Nice and wide.
I struggled to regain control over my blinking, trying to convince myself that nothing was coming into the way of my eye.
After repeating the exercise on my left eye, we got up and shifted into the Optometrist’s office.
How did you get here today?
I drove here. I’ve just come from work.
Did you bring your sunnies?
Nope, I replied, thinking about how grey and miserable a day it was outside.
How’s your vision? Not too bright?
Following my Optometrist’s instructions, I looked to the left, then up at the ceiling, then to my right, and then to the ground as he shone a blazing white light over each of my dilated eyes.
I sat there, feeling like a bundle of nerves, while telling myself that it was unlikely that much would have changed since my last diabetes eye check 12 months ago.
I’ve visited an Ophthalmologist at the hospital before, prior to learning that my Optometrist can do the same eye screening with far more convenience for me and completely covered through Medicare. My endo is happy with this arrangement, and I know that an Ophthalmologist is my port of call if any eye changes are detected during these appointments.
Okay, we’re done. You can sit back.
Your eyes look nice and healthy. There are no signs of any diabetic changes. We’ll see you again in another 12 months.
I shook his hand and thanked him, pleased that I could check another thing off my ‘to do’ list.