Making a Difference, One Patient at a Time

I’ve always loved to read. Unfortunately, after I was diagnosed with a cataract in my right eye, I found myself reading less and less. Wearing contact lenses didn’t seem to help much. Neither did reading glasses. If I was indoors without bright sunlight things just never seemed clear. I often got eye strain, and it was the eye strain more than anything else that made me stop reading. 

I’m convinced that my poor vision played a role in the loss of my job too. I had been a Tier II tech agent for Sony PlayStation for many years; and my job had demanded that I be able to look up large amounts of information quickly and accurately – which I no longer could.

When I found out that I had cataracts in both eyes, and especially after color blindness increasingly became a problem, I started to feel hopeless. I couldn’t get a driver’s license. I couldn’t fill out a job application without betraying my poor vision. And then when I found myself having to deal with homelessness as well, it seemed the situation had become impossible. I was terrified of being so helpless. 

One year later, it’s amazing for me to now reflect upon how much things have changed. I’m currently in an extremely demanding IT training program. My textbooks are typically 700 pages long. When I first started training I had to take a PC motherboard apart and then reassemble it. Afterwards I spent hours completing detailed lab simulations. Now, after having successfully earned both the A+ and Network+ certifications, I spend hours staring at computer screens learning how to use the Linux command line. When I began Linux training, my first homework assignment was to read a 175 page book. None of this would be possible if I hadn’t received the cataract operations which restored sight to both of my eyes. 

Although I Care San Antonio has provided me with bifocals, I’m happy to say that oftentimes I don’t even use them. After my eye operations I had been concerned that I wouldn’t be able to function without continually wearing some type of vision aid, but happily that hasn’t been my experience, and it seems my vision is still slowly improving over time. I sit in the front of my class because I want to make sure I can concentrate on the professor, not because I can’t see the board. And often I will find myself typing on my keyboard, or reading a book, or writing notes, all without the use of bifocals or reading glasses. 

Thanks to the operations I received, I’m well on my way towards becoming a Linux Network Admin. I hope to get a driver’s license soon; and once I complete this training program, I intend to resume work on several writing projects which have been on hold for several years. None of this would have been possible had my eyesight not been restored to me. It’s no exaggeration to say that the eye operations I received through I Care San Antonio and the generosity of ALCON, have given me back my life, both literally and figuratively.