It was an overdue eye check-up and purchase of a new pair of glasses. And it’s a pretty long story.

You should first know that I wake up at 5AM every Saturday to make it to my 6:30 AM leader’s meeting in Ortigas. I had a tired night that Friday so I woke up with tired eyes, with no choice but to wear my broken pair of glasses — one “arm” is fastened to the lens area using a tiger clip.  The plan was to wear that until my eyes have “rested,” and then to put them on after the training.  Unfortunately, I forgot to pack the right lens case. I couldn’t afford to be semi-blind that morning so I went to my trusty old mall optical, EO Executive Optical in Megamall.  I rang the bell, filled out a new index card with my name because they lost my record, waited approximately 20 minutes before being called by an optometrist to get scanned by that machine where I had to put my chin and forehead against this frame, open my eyes and look at this photo of a barn in a huge, green farm field.  Then the doctors called me, led me to this little dark room on the side, put on a pair of the opto-glasses and started to test the grade of my eyes.  That’s the day I found out that my eyes went from 360 to 425 WITH astigmatism.  I’ve been wearing glasses since the 4th grade and I never though my eyes would be THIS damaged!

I was about to get a new pair of frames and lenses when, during a quick exchange of emails, my friend Kz told me that because I acted for their AVP, her tita could give me a free pair of glasses.  Considering that I was about to pay 4000++ for a pair from EO, I immediately said yes to Kz’s offer and get lenses from EO instead.

A week has past, and I ‘ve been using the computer at home with squinting eyes and blurred vision.  Of course, when I take my contacts out, I can’t wear the broken frames and the 350-grade glasses.  So I decided to take the day off today from work, do my personal errands, and finally, go to Tita Menchie’s clinic.

AND BOY WAS IT A DIFFERENT EXPERIENCE!

You enter this nice cozy clinic, not bombarded with glass cabinets upon glass cabinets of frames.  There are magazines to read, a TV to watch, and good airconditioning.  And one can tell that this isn’t the ordinary eye check-up.  Here are the signs:

1.  Long forms to fill out.  I had to fill out a LOT of forms (4-5 questionnaires) — a sign that I was getting medical and not just an over-the-counter transaction.

2.  More tests and thorough examination with explanations. Getting eyes refracted with lenses on. Then getting checked with lenses on — both with the “letters on the screen” test; and the ” microscopic” exam, which tested if my contacts were the right fit for me.  Tita told me that my contacts were, and sorry for the word, “sub-standard.”  The contacts I got from EO were only letting my eyes breath 19-21 units, when our eyes should breathe 80-90 units of Oxygen.

She had me remove my lenses off.

And then we did all the exams again, this time including an exam to get the shape of my eye — an exam used by the Lasik and eye laser surgery clinics to test if you’re a good candidate or not.  I learned today that I was a good candidate because my eyes had equal yellow parts in both the upper and lower half of my eyes’ spheres.  And there weren’t a lot of “red” in the picture, which meant that I didn’t have thin eyes, making it easier to re-shape them.

Once my vision was clear again, through the usual glasses exam; she did some other tests on my eyes — including looking at them under the microscope (or something like it) through which we discovered that I had allergies in my eyes.  Apparently, my changing solutions was causing an irritation for my eyes, leaving residue that can possible cause inflammation.  IMAGINE MY SHOCK WHEN I HEARD THIS NEW INFORMATION! Gawrsh.  Then I learned that my blood vessels are trying to rise up because my eyes aren’t able to breathe! :((  I have been killing my eyes!

This is how I was conviced that EO’s long-term lenses, which are about to be phased out by the FDA, are lower than the substandard!  They’re cheap, fast-food solutions to eye problems!

3. Discounts and Freebies. Well, this is perhaps I was a friend of her niece, and that I helped out in a recent video project for their company’s promotion… but nonetheless, it counts as the third reason why it’s not like my ordinary eye check-ups.

Suffice it so say that after all that, I got a free pair of new SOFT SILICONE Breathable lenses.  They last for a month, but I could really notice the difference!  I can literally understand what tita meant when she said, my eyes needed to breathe.

Then I had to get a new pair of glasses – the whole reason why I had to travel all the way to Makati to get them. Though I must be honest, I got disappointed when I heard Tita say “30 percent off,” which instantly confirmed that they weren’t for free — but I don’t mind at all!  The good news is that i got EXCELLENT SERVICE and quality eye care examinations and advice.  So I gladly paid for a new pair of glases and lens solutions.  In fact, I’ve just decided to always go to tita for my eye problems.. There’s really a huge difference with quality and expert eye service — THE REAL EXPERTS — not the money making bozos we see in the malls.

Abesamis Eye Clinic has two branches.  One in Medical Plaza Bldg (behind Makati Medical Hospital) and one in the Mall of Asia.  Best way to know more is to click this: http://www.abesamiseyeclinic.com/

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