You Can't Enjoy the Beauty of Life When You Can't See It

How Will You Know What You’re Missing?

There are things in life you’ll never forget seeing.  They can be unusual, inspiring, or just plain weird.  They may even be once in a lifetime events.  Think about some of the most memorable sights in your life.  It could be a national monument, a natural treasure, or something less grand but no less beautiful, like the dimples on a baby when she smiles.  Then think about how few people will see the same things – or see them the same way.  Now imagine if, when you saw it, your vision wasn’t clear.  Would you have missed out on the finer details?  Would you have seen it at all?

Night Sky

A Once In A Lifetime Sight – Sort Of

Last Friday I was at our local high school football game.  It was a beautiful evening, with clear skies and just the right temperature.  With apologies to the Cougar football team, I headed to the field with a sense of anticipation – but not for the game.

A friend of mine told me the International Space Station (ISS) could be seen that night by most people East of the Mississippi.  I was charged.  I didn’t know you could see the ISS with the naked eye, and I set a reminder on my smartphone to make sure I wouldn’t miss it.

Although I knew the exact moment it would come into view, I kept my eyes skyward for an hour.  I’m pretty sure others noticed, because I saw the people around me looking up too.  When the ISS sailed into view, I pointed and exclaimed, “There it is!”

For the next three minutes, I was transfixed.

It arced across the night sky and set over the far horizon.  Excitement grew around me too, once the people in the crowd realized what they were looking at.  The buzz lasted for several minutes after the ISS was out of sight, and then we gradually settled back into the football game.

I couldn’t believe I had seen it.  I was in awe – astronauts were living in the ISS over 200 miles above the Earth, cruising along at over 17,000 miles per hour.  I wondered what they saw as they gazed at their humble planet below.  It was a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Or so I thought.

As it turns out, the ISS is visible even in broad daylight.  And, flyovers are relatively common.  You can find a schedule of them here.

But the chance to see it again is just a bonus.  Here’s my point: that night I was wearing a high definition, glare free version of Transitions Vantage lenses.  And boy, was I glad.  When I was still thinking I’d never see the ISS again, I was thanking myself for remembering some of my best eyewear.  I thought, “If I didn’t have these, I might not have seen the ISS at all.”

What About You?

Now think back to something you’ve seen that you’ll never forget.  Perhaps it was an example of fine art.  Maybe it was a natural wonder.  Or more simply, it could have been a flower clinging to a rock.  Or the time you spotted a bird as it called from within a grove of the trees.  Without crisp, clear vision you stand a chance of letting these moments of beauty pass you by.

These are just examples of some pretty amazing details you might miss:

  • You won’t miss the Grand Canyon if your prescription is out of date. But you might miss the Colorado River rapids thousands of feet below.
  • You may not miss the Capitol Building, but you might miss the Statue of Freedom on top.
  • You won’t miss Redwood National Forest, but you might miss the texture of the leaves as you gaze upwards.
  • And like me on that Friday night, if you’re hoping for a glimpse of something small and fleeting, is it possible you’ll miss it altogether if you haven’t made the effort to improve your visual lifestyle?

In my last post, I said life is too beautiful to live with blurry vision.  There are many other reasons to upgrade your visual lifestyle such as eye health, loved ones, and productivity.  But beauty is my favorite reason.  And it falls into my favorite category of living the visual lifestyle: appreciation.  See how Mrs. Jones practices it in this post.

If you won’t do it for productivity, clear vision, or eye health, do it for beauty.  Everyone seeks it and everyone needs it.  Don’t be left wondering if you’re missing out.  Enhance your visual lifestyle and seek the beauty of the world, knowing you’ll be seeing every last ounce.

Question: What one beautiful thing in your life do you know you’ll never forget seeing?  Please comment here or on our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter pages.

Life Is Too Beautiful to Live With Blurry Vision

Enhance Your Visual Lifestyle to See It All Clearly

We’ve all had those moments when it seems like time stands still and we’re in awe of the beauty around us.  Sometimes, it can even take your breath away.  Whether it’s an amazing sunset, a trip to the beach, or a walk in the woods, there’s something about beauty that resonates deeply within us.  It’s something we recognize immediately, even if we can’t fully explain it.  But what if you couldn’t see it clearly?  Or worse, what if you thought you saw it clearly, but really didn’t?



A Colorful Discovery

Last weekend Liz and I were standing outside at dusk with a friend who also happens to be a patient.  He was talking about the mountains of East Tennessee, which he loves dearly.  But then he surprised us – he thanked us for his clear vision.

“Do you see that line of ridges over there?” he asked.  “Do you see how the colors change gradually from ridge to ridge?  Well, before, I couldn’t see all that.  I just saw the mountain as one big, black shape.  I didn’t know all those colors existed.”

This man is in his 40s.  He thought he was seeing clearly.  But sadly, he was missing out on something that would have enhanced his life’s joy – clear vision while visiting the mountains he loved so much.

Is this something you’ve experienced?  If so, you know how pleased he is.  And if you haven’t, is it possible you’re not seeing as clearly as you should?  This might be true even if you think you see clearly now.

In a previous post, I encouraged readers to have a thorough eye exam yearly.  One reason was visual – even if your eyes are healthy, you may not be seeing as clearly as you should.  And even if you are, it’s possible there are certain situations that could still be made more clear and beautiful with proper eye care and eyewear.

Here are some great examples of why life’s too beautiful to live with blurry vision:

1.  People: have you ever been “people watching?” It’s a common pastime for good reason. There are so many wonderful people in the world it would be a shame to miss them.  And what about your relatives and loved ones?  Think about those who rely on you to keep your vision clear.  It’d be a shame to miss all those smiles, dimples, and bright eyes.  Just ask Marlene.

2.  Art: check out the pictures below. It’s Joyce Crain’s work, From Above plus a detail shot. I found it hanging at the Knoxville Convention Center.  It is a truly creative approach to art.  Seen as a whole, the image is impressive – but when you move closer you discover her technique: layers of woven fabric, ribbon, and plastic form the cityscape you see.  This concept applies to so much art – pointillism, textures, mixed media, mosaics.  There is so much beautiful art in the world, why not see it as clearly as you can?

Layers 1B

Layers 1A Detail

3.  Nature: one of the most common exclamations after someone tries new eyewear for the first time is “I can see the leaves on the trees!” Are you like my friend who thought it was normal to see one big, black mountain? Are there subtle beauties in nature you’re missing simply because you can’t see them?

4.  Textures: this is one of my favorites, maybe because it’s so overlooked. When we think of textures, we often think of our sense of touch. But there are a lot of amazing textures in our world that we don’t touch, but are beautiful to look at.  Think of the three other categories above.  You might see an older gentleman and appreciate the laugh lines carved into his face by a life of joy.  You might stare in amazement at a thickly wrought oil painting in a museum.  You may stand in awe at the rock formations on the other side of a canyon.  While many textures in our lives are out of reach, they may still inspire feelings of joy and wonder as we absorb them into our vision.

Now, I want you to think about each category again.  But this time, instead of reading my descriptions, fill in your own.  You could just think about them, or if you’re really feeling inspired, write them down:





There are so many important reasons to keep your vision as clear as possible.  But the best ones are the ones you already know deep in your soul.

If you feel like you are missing out on life’s beauty because you can’t see clearly, you owe it to yourself to have a thorough eye examination by your trusted eye doctor.  Start your journey to a lifetime of clear, comfortable vision and healthy eyes today.  Life is too beautiful not to.

Question: Where in your life do you find beauty that inspires you?  Please comment here or on our Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram Pages.

13 Uncommon Questions Essential for Better Vision

Asking Your Doctor Is the Best Way to Improve Your Eyes

What if journalists were not taught to ask questions?  Not only would the news hour be reduced to ten minutes, but also the rest of us would miss out on a lot of important information.  It would get frustrating because we’d want to know more but we’d be stuck with the headline.  So why do we fail to ask questions when the topic is something most important to us?



The Rarity of Questions

Yesterday I saw a rare patient.  By rare, I mean she was prepared with a description of how she spends her workday and she had a list of questions she wanted to ask me about her vision.  She wanted to know how she could improve her productivity, about new technology for her vision, and her eye health status.

The result?  She is incredibly happy with her contact lenses, reading glasses, and high-definition progressive lenses.  And, she will soon add custom office lenses to her armament of visual accessories.  As a bonus, she’s confident her eyes are healthy and happy.

In my last post I revealed a secret trick to achieve better vision.  I call it a secret because it’s used so little but it is the best way to improve your eye health and visual lifestyle.  Asking questions of an expert is the single most effective way to get information that will help you, no matter the subject.  And because your eye exam takes place in person with your trusted eye doctor, it is the best time to ask some specific questions that can lead to a lifetime of clear, comfortable vision for you.

I realize your eyes and vision are complex subjects and you may not know enough to ask the right questions.  It may even seem intimidating.  But your doctor should realize this too, and offer explanations before you ask.  But your doctor isn’t a mind reader – asking questions is still important.

Because it can seem overwhelming to think about what to ask, here’s a short list of important questions your doctor should be happy to answer for you:

Will you please explain the testing and what it means?  There can be a lot of confusing tests done at your eye exam.  Doctors and support personnel should explain each test and what it does, but you may still lose track.  Don’t hesitate to ask.

What is my visual acuity measurement?  This is the 20/20 number – although yours may be different.  And, it may differ depending on whether you are wearing vision correction or not.

How is my general eye health?  This question will allow you to focus better on your doctor’s other explanations.  If you’re worried about major issues, you may not hear other helpful hints that address visual comfort, eye hygiene, or custom visual solutions.

Has my vision or eye health changed?  If so, why?  Is that normal?  One thing you need when you leave your eye doctor’s office is peace of mind.  Find it with these questions.

What visual changes, eye symptoms, or health issues should I watch out for?  Although your doctor can’t predict the future, he or she can tell you what to expect based on your prescription, eye conditions, and overall health.

How can I improve my vision?  This could include basic options like glasses or contact lenses.  But it could also include custom visual solutions like laser surgery, non-laser vision enhancements, custom eyewear or contact lenses, and other custom visual solutions.

What changes can I make that will help me care for my eyes better?  This is a great question that should help you discover both vision and lifestyle changes that will lead to healthier and more comfortable eyes, and clearer vision.

How can I protect my eyes and improve my vision when I’m doing what I love the most?  This question leads custom visual solutions.  Whether you enjoy active sports or hours on the computer, inherent risks including high speed impact or high energy blue light can be addressed.

Do I have any risk factors for eye conditions or diseases?  If so, how do I manage that risk?  This question is one major reason you should have an eye exam even if your vision is clear.  You must know any risk factors if you want to preserve your vision and sight for life.

When is my next follow up visit, and why should I return?  This question is crucial – if you don’t know when and why to return to your eye doctor, you may forget its importance or skip it altogether.  Although I recommend an eye exam yearly, your doctor may want to see you sooner for additional testing.  If so, ask about these too.

If you arm yourself with questions like these, your vision will be better for it.  Your eye doctor will understand you better, and you will understand your eye health and vision better.  And, you will have used the best trick I know to better eye health and vision: asking questions of an expert.

Question: What’s the one thing you’ve always wanted to know about your eyes but never asked?  Feel free to answer here, or post to our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter accounts.

Read next: How Do You Use Your Eyes?  and You Probably Aren’t using This Simple Trick for Better Vision