Quality of Life

Some people like to say, "Eat well, do good, get exercise, and die anyway," as some sort of excuse for partying, being unhealthy and/or being inconsiderate. This logic has no place in a happy, fulfilling and successful life. Regardless of when you die, you want the life you live today, and tomorrow to be the best life you can possibly have. There is no excuse for not doing the best for yourself and the best you can for those you love. Even if I were going to die in six months, I still would continue my diet exactly as I do (if not do even better) because I want the highest quality for my life. The quantity is quite irrelevant.

~Raederle Phoenix Jacot

"Are you really sure that a floor can't also be a ceiling?" ~ M. C. Escher

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Eye Strain

You hear about “eye-strain” and situations where people get headaches so bad that they need absolutely all light cut off from their eyes... But hearing about it just is not the same as experiencing it. Even now, my head is beginning to hurt and I may have to cut this shorter than intended.

I've been away from my computer since Thursday, when my eyes simply quit.

Factors that contributed to my extreme inability to use my eyes;

    • Areo Garden light in very close proximity to my computer screen.

    • Not venturing outside very often; no exposure to full sunlight.

    • An old florescent light-bulb in the kitchen.

    • Reading more often and for longer periods of time than I have in years.

    • Not eating nearly as many carrots as I was for the previous two years.

    • Glasses prescription getting further and further from 'correct' as my eyes worsen.

    • Using my glasses to watch anime on my laptop (with the screen only a few feet away) with my husband while he was sick for many hours a day.

I can't say that any one of those is the cause, because I've been having more and more symptoms for a while. For example;

    • Not being able to play video games for very long without developing a headache.

    • Having to take a break to rest my head after reading a chapter or two of a book.

    • Increased sensitivity to sunlight.

    • An attack of pain which turned into hysterics involving crying and laughing at the same time after using my computer for the majority of the day a couple weeks ago.

    • Increased sensitivity to sounds, especially video-game sound effects and alarms.

    • Increased sensitivity to being in close proximity to a microwave.

Each of these has been growing over time, and I can mark it's progression and worsening right in line with the first list of causes.

The glasses have been far-off the mark for a while now – maybe for an entire year. I've experienced more headaches in the past year than I have previously in my life.

I've been having my trouble with my eyes since I moved here to be with my husband, and that's also when the prolonged exposure to the florescent lights began.

I started experiencing all sorts of sensitivities while my husband was sick, which was while we were watching three or four hours of Full Metal Alchemist of my laptop each night. I didn't think the headaches were really separate from the other issues; such as fatigue and runny nose.

And I'd go on, but my head is beginning to pound, so I will now proceed to input what I wrote while blindfolded. I was desperate to write just for the release I get while writing, so the day before yesterday my husband set up a plain text document for me to try to type in. Unedited, it would be fairly ugly.

Unedited clip, “took me to lots of different pla es today... whiel I was wearing a blindfold..,.”

The blindfolded entry I typed;

This will need a god awful amount of editing later. My [eye] nerves have gone haywire... or I've pulled a muscle in my eye, or something. Jeez, it's so weird not to see anything appearing on the screen in front of me...

It's so tempting to just peek and see [what I'm typing]... but I know that would give my head a lot, a lot, a lot of pain.

My husband took me around everywhere today. He took me to the store. He took me a lot of different places while I was wearing a blindfold. He took me first to CVS and we got me an actual eye-cover. I'm wearing that eye-cover now, technically.

This is
totally not the same without bring able to see what you're writing.


My husband informs me I'm typing in all capitals again... great.

I am sad.

I want to be able to see.

Perhaps I should practice typing more often while wearing a blindfold.


This makes me continually think, “What if I were blind?” Like, it's a non-stop wonderment.

Anyway, the moral of this story is;

Keep raw carrots in your diet.

Don't use glasses for close-up things whenever you can avoid it.

Don't over-use your computer.

Get outside every now and then.

Take care of your body!


Anonymous said...

It's interesting that you posted this at this exact time. I used to get eye strain from staring at the computer screen just about every single day. Then, it stopped, and I think I know why. I had been using a pair of 150 readers, thinking that my eyes needed that degree of magnification in order to see clearly in the long run. However, what actually happened was that I overworked my left eye, it being the stronger of the two eyes. So at the end of every day, I would feel major eye strain. Then I switched to 125 readers, which still enable to see very clearly, and actually strengthen my eyes, rather than weaken them. I made the switch about three months ago. I had not had eye strain since then - UNTIL LAST NIGHT. This is entirely due to the inordinate amount of obsession and imbalance I am entertaining in order to STAY FOCUSED (ironically enough), and FINISH MY CURRENT PROJECT. Obviously, your entry was a "wake-up call." I need to assure myself of a Greater Balance in my life. Thank you. My thoughts and prayers are in your favor.

Ishtarmuz said...

Ok, let me just say that knowing your history and your mind, that the first thing you need to consider before you go looking for a cause for that pain (or any illness) that both the cause and the cure always involve mind, body and spirit. You can pursue both the cause and the cure from any one or all three at once.

Pain is a warning, it also is only perceived in the brain. Though you can block the signal, the muscle stain needs relief to let the blood flow. You know enough yoga to make that happen, you also should remember the various headache cures I taught you. If not, skype me and let me remind you.

You also might look into NLP and decide whether there is something that you don't want to see?

Yes, you have a predisposition to eye strain since your were little. There are eye exercises for such things. Yes, flourescent lights can give some people migraines. The issue with that is why now? You can go down the list.

Be well.



Phoenix's Muse said...

I still am not able to spend much time at my computer. I've been only been able to squeak out a half an hour a day, which I've been spending working on my novel.

Andy, I'm glad you found this to be a wake up. I've found it to be a serious wake up in many ways. Living like a blind person for a few days is really something else. It really has brought me to see my priorities more clearly.

Dad, I do know for a fact that the plant light is particularly hurting my eyes. It's very bright, and not designed for humans - it's designed for plants. And it's been within my direct vision from my laptop for quite some time; and only recently moved.

That said, I think there have been some things I've been in denial about which not being able to see for some time has allowed me to come to terms with.

Aside from that, I believe there is damage to the nerves and muscles around my eyes and that I just need to keep going fairly easy on them and continue to let them heal. It's amazing how hard it is on the eyes to look at a lit screen. I can actually FEEL every muscle in my eyes working very hard as I write this. And after hitting the 'publish' button, I will be returning to not being at my computer for the rest of the day.


Raederle Phoenix

Anonymous said...

I came back here from the link on your AIM status, to see if there was any more news how you are doing. It sounds as though the level of blindness stemming from this eye strain is very obstructive and persisent. I hope your recovery is speedy. What your dad is saying about muscle strain and how yoga can help is interesting, and something I never knew.

As you know, I am a person who dives almost vehemently into his projects when the compulsion to do so becomes sufficiently overwhelming. This can result in a high degree of productivity, but it can also feed an unhealthy tendency to neglect basic needs such as sufficient nutrition and rest. I'm not feeling the eye strain to the degree that I was when it first struck me, but I also have been resting from the project.

Finally, I caught the energy of portions of my previous comment, and not without self-consciousness saw that this overdose of obsession was evident in certain portions of the post; viz., capitalized words and phrases somewhat imposing in their energy. Nobody can be around me at those times, and then, when they are over, I wonder where everybody is.

Phoenix's Muse said...

I'm sure now that a major reason for the eye strain was having the plant light right next to my laptop.

I'm fully recovered from that now, although I have so much to catch up on from being away that I have not really gotten back 'on the horse' so to speak.

Anonymous said...

It does seem that the proximity of the plant light was a key factor, if not the major factor. In any case, I'm glad you are doing better now.