How I See Things

How I See Things
Cartoon-like drawing in shades of dark to medium purple. Eyes with beautiful eyelashes, looking through a pair of glasses.

Monday, February 24, 2020

3 Dimensions

So, I have mentioned here before that I see in 2 dimensions. My eyes have never worked together, for as long as I can remember. I flicker between them very rapidly. As a result, I take in at least twice the information that everyone else takes in, and my brain has to make sense of it all.

When I am tired, I close one eye. When I am out in the sunlight, I close one eye. That probably has to do with my sensitivity to light, also (which my vision therapist is ALSO working on).

Well, so I remember years ago, probably in 1984, seeing Vincent Van Gogh's paintings of his room and the cafe, and I thought to myself: "of COURSE he painted them that way, that's how he saw them." Because that's how I see things.

Image courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago's website:

"Café Terrace at Night," 1888 Photo: Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain

It turns out other people look at me in constant perplexity and cannot understand what I mean when I say that I see things in 2 dimensions.

You know how when you go to the movies, and you see a nice movie. Let's say: Star Wars. It has ships and motion and people talking. And it's all on a flat screen. That's how I see things.

[Image of Darth Vader talking with Princess Leah is from Pinterest. It's the only one that I could find to share.]

Then you can go to the exact same movie, and wear those 3D glasses, and suddenly, those ships are flying toward you. Maybe Darth Vader and Princess Lea are talking and they are closer to you than the background is. This is how I feel like the rest of the world must see things.

I don't see in 3D unless I am wearing special glasses, like the ones given in the movie theater. Those glasses have a certain way of bending light and such, to force a fake 3D image. They force your eyes to take in images as a 3D image, even though it's actually flat.

Anyway, so several weeks ago, I was sitting on my toilet (yes, I do that sometimes, don't make a big deal out of it), and I looked at the orange towel that one of my boys had haphazardly hung up on the rack. I stared at it. I realized it looked 3D to me. I could see the part that was folded and sticking out toward me - as if it was 3D.

I've NEVER seen 3D before that with my own eyes. I just wanted to sit there and stare at the stupid towel. Sloppily hung.

That week, I went in and told my vision therapist, A, about the towel. She was thrilled for me! She loves hearing my progress. She is working so hard with various kinds of prism glasses (I have previously typed this as prizm with a "z" and I don't have the energy to go back and fix my posts, but I have been corrected that this technology is spelled with an "s," and not a "z.")

I have caught one other glimpse of 3D in the "real" world somewhere else, since that towel. But I don't see it all the time, every day.

An interesting note .... as I typed this blog post, I have had my left eye shut. I just can't take in all that extra information. Reading and typing (typing while trying to loosely proofread my own stuff), I do this with 1 eye shut.

I look forward to having both of my eyes work together. I feel like life will be so much more easy and efficient for me, instead of so exhausting and trying every day, every moment, as soon as my eyes work the way they are supposed to.

Monday, February 17, 2020

More Tape on My Glasses


I am sitting here, watching Doctor Who with Christopher Eccleston, as I type up a few posts to be published in the next few weeks.

I wanted to share that since I got this new concussion, I need to get the eye doctor - Dr. Magic - to re-evaluate me for Vision Therapy. My vision therapist put more tape on my glasses since I told her that my double vision has gotten worse since the concussion. So - here is a new photo of my glasses with the more tape on them. Thank you to my vision therapist, A, for doing this for me. Every little thing helps.

More tape on my glasses. Rose Tyler from Doctor Who on the TV in the background.

I also want to mention that I went in to vision therapy a week after the concussion, crying. Crying and crying due to things going on in my personal life. My head was in a complete jumble. I know I wasn't talking about things in any order. It was all completely like telling pieces of the puzzle that were scattered around a room:

"This piece of the puzzle is this...." walk to the other side of the room, find one in a corner: "this piece of the puzzle is this...." walk over to the couch, find another piece of the puzzle under a couch cushion "this piece of the puzzle looks like this...." go to the dog food bowl and pull out a half-eaten puzzle piece, "this part of the puzzle looks like this...."

I wasn't making any sense. I was crying and crying about my life. She put a weighted blanket on me. It is like getting a big hug. It turns up my body's sense of gravity. Somehow, it helps with my diagnosed Disassociation. It makes me tune in to my body as a real entity.

My vision therapist listened to me as I told all of these disparate things that I am positive didn't make any sense.

Then, she put funky glasses on me and used a pen light to shine light on my eyes through these very dark glasses. I will share more about this in the next post.

I left vision therapy after this session, feeling much more grounded and calm than when I had gone in - crying and frantic. I feel safe at vision therapy. I am grateful to have this one very safe space in my life.

I haven't ever shared yet where my vision therapy team is. I would like to give a call out to them. They are caring and wonderful and helping me learn to see and to walk. And I want to recommend them to everyone.

You can find the vision therapy team here - Dr. Tod Davis. Dr. Davis is the one in this blog to whom I refer to as: Dr. Magic.

Putting the extra tape on my glasses has made my vision calm down a bit. I am grateful they know these simple tips and tricks to help me see better - a little bit every visit.

Mentioned in this post:

Doctor Who.

Weighted Blanket


Medical Costs

"Every time I turn around, someone on my medical team is telling me I need to purchase something else. Last week, it was my concussion doctor telling me to purchase one of these:  
 They said it will relieve the tension in my neck, get blood flowing, and relive the pain in my head / forehead / migraine pain. 

He let me use his in his office last week while he went and did, I don't know, paperwork or something.  I think it did help. The left side of my forehead was hurting before I used it, and the right side was really hurting. 

After I used it, the left side didn't hurt much at all, and the right side hurt still, but maybe not quite so much. He showed me how to really get up under my skull and massage there. It was cool in that I could control how hard to push. 

When I have had others try to rub my neck, they may not have pushed nearly as hard as I would like them to. I can't remember anyone pushing too hard for me. I am pretty tough, and my muscles are constantly tense (thanks to my Complex PTSD; the constancy of being in "fight, flight, fawn or freeze" mode 100% of the time) ... so I like a strong push down on my muscles to try to get them to loosen up. 

There was a time, more than a decade ago, maybe 20 years ago now, when I went to a massage therapist about a struggle I was having in my shoulder. I eventually had a surgery on that shoulder. But before I went that route, I tried a massage therapist to help loosen a tight spot in there. The therapist commented that they had never known anyone to have such tense muscles before. They had to really push in order to get anything to work for me.  

So, with this contraption in the doctor's office, I was able to push so hard it almost ripped my skin. Which both felt good, but also felt terrible.  So, I ordered it today, just now. It should arrive on my "free shipping day," which is just a few days from now. I am going to see if some coconut oil will help it not rip my skin, but still help me push so hard.


Wow, I can tell I am seriously distracted as I type this. 

I talked with both of my kids early on in typing this. Coffee, school, computers, math, elephants. 

What can we talk and not talk about in the course of 20 minutes while I type up a blog post? 

So, the vision therapy place often gives me things. Next week they may give me a ball and a string. Gosh, I seriously need to get THAT blog post typed up. I found out that my eyes aren't lined up. And that's yet ANOTHER blog post I need to type up. There are so many weird things with my eyes. I wish my eyes just worked the way they should. 

A few weeks ago, they gave me blue sunglasses. For relaxing. It's like looking out at a cloudy day, looking through these blue sunglasses. Very relaxing.  

Early on, they had me buy a walking rail. I sanded and painted it. My memory is that it is 2 inches x 4 inches by 8 feet. I took photos of me sanding and painting it. I was going to do a whole blog post about this walking rail, too. Who knows where those photos went by now.  

So, one last thing - I have so many posts I want to type up, but also have constant THINGS going on in my life, distracting me. And my vision problems are one of the ways that manifest in me as ADHD, although the Complex PTSD also manifests as ADHD.  

Today, it seems, my thoughts are completely unclear and distracting. I was trying to share that medical care is expensive, even with good insurance. Because they are constantly saying, "buy this, buy this, buy this." It costs a lot of privilege with money to be able to "buy this, buy this, buy this."  

Without further distraction & also while writing something that isn't the best sentence that I have ever written -- I wish health care covered all these EXTRA things that doctors and my medical care team are constantly telling me I need need need. :::sigh::: 

I hope, at some point here, also to get to a place where I am not as distracted and constantly trying to just keep up with my own thoughts.  

 --------------------------- Sorry I didn't post last week; I had too many thoughts in my head & too few moments to actually SIT and clearly THINK and WRITE any posts. I need a writing desk and a writing time. 

Do you have a writing practice? When and where do you write? I was looking at writing desks for me .... and, there I go again, with my distracting thoughts. Ok, not the best blog post ever. But maybe this shows you a sample of what I contend with all day, every day. 

Today is definitely a day when I can't seem to focus.  :::: sigh :::::  / again.  

I hope you have a good day / week / month / year. "

Monday, February 10, 2020

Walking Rail

[A photo of me walking a rail at Vision Therapy. The rail is a long plank of wood that has been painted a very light blue. I am a blonde gal wearing funky prisms glasses with a bright orange band around my head, and I am also wearing a dress with blue roses, and fuzzy socks. Behind me is a platform for people to sit on and swing as another aspect of vision therapy.]
Me, in my favorite dress, using the walk rail at Vision Therapy

One of the first things we did with vision therapy was teach me how to use a walk rail. I had no idea I had challenges walking. I mean, I do know that when I was a kid, every day I walked in to walls and furniture.

I remember being a teenager, and waking up and walking right in to my dresser, then walking into the wall that jutted out in front of my room in the hallway. (It was the wall on the outside of my brother's closet, in the room next to mine; but for me to walk down the hallway, I needed to walk around this corner.) I walked into that wall every single day.

So, one morning, I happened to pay attention to my body. (It wasn't something I did very often; see posts on dissasociation - I will probably post on it many times over the course of this blog.)

I woke up, and got out of bed to walk to the bathroom. I walked straight into my dresser, maneuvered myself around it, and walked straight into the wall outside my room instead of walking around either obstruction.

I decided I was done walking into these things. I couldn't probably help myself completely and stop walking into everything, but I could at least stop myself from walking into my dresser and this wall.

I knew blind people would count their steps and have their entire house memorized so they wouldn't have to walk into their furniture. Surely I could figure out a way to stop walking into things in my own home. I decided right then and there to approach them more slowly and take my time and walk around them.

I never walked into that dresser or that wall again. Don't get me wrong, I still walk into things. A lot. I have bruises up and down my legs. I don't even notice that I walk into things. I will see a bruise sometimes and wonder what I walked into. I often walk into the dishwasher door and the coffee table. And who knows what else.

I would figure when the vision therapist told me I had trouble walking, that THIS was what they were referring to.

The way this vision therapist seems to work is they start me on activities, but won't necessarily say what it is or why we are doing something. I know it would help me, personally, if I knew why we were doing something. But I guess their methodology is that they want me to improve organically. Improve by doing things, rather than telling me what they are trying to improve.

It reminds me of the early scene in the movie, "The Karate Kid," where the student is learning "Wax on, wax off." He doesn't know he is learning Karate right then - he just thinks he is waxing a car. Maybe my vision therapist is like my Vision Master - she is showing my body how to do things. And then, it will naturally improve in doing things when I am going about my business during days, outside of the vision therapy room.

I will be talking about the vision rail many times in these blog posts. Recently, when I was walking it, my vision therapist told me how she saw improvement, and THEN, I understood why she hadn't told me what she was going for. I will share all of that, too.

My vision rail looks like a floor level balance beam. And: I don't walk ON it. I walk next to it in certain, specific ways. 

Monday, February 3, 2020


One of the things my vision therapist is working on me with very intensely is “dissociation.” It’s an official diagnosis. One of the things they have pointed out to me with this is that I am not aware of my feet or my body when I am walking. 

My gravity reader in my body is dialed way too low. They want me to get ankle weights and wear them everywhere to make my gravity reader go up. So I will dissociate less.  

[This is a photo of me walking the board, wearing my dress that has blue roses on it. I have my right leg raised, and I am tapping my knee with my left hand. I am also wearing black ankle weights in this photo.]

I continue to be surprised and (grateful?) that this is an actual, diagnosable thing. And that they are working on it with me.  I am literally learning how to walk again. 

Today they had me swinging my arms widely while looking straight forward. They also have me walking on either side of a plank and tapping my raised knee with each step, with my opposite hand. It is cross-body exercises. We are re-wiring my brain to have cross-connections that I apparently never made in early childhood. 

Per their instructions, I bought a walking rail for my dining room. I painted it a happy turquoise. 

I walk it a lot. My feet follow the edges of it so I am learning to walk properly.

I will he saying quite a bit more about this in future blog posts.

Flickering Eyesight

So, I have known for a long time that my eyes don’t work together. It has taken me almost 50 years to be able to describe what I see to peop...