It seemed like a deadly cocktail… one part nightmare, one part miracle. My distance vision unassisted by my glasses had returned. I no longer needed my Rx eyewear and Rx sunwear. And yet, come dark, driving snapped to impossible as sparkling stars surrounded virtually every light in my vision.

On a short drive from a friend’s home, I noted to my wife and son the neighborhood seemed to be coordinating some sort of ornamental light bulb show at every front door and with every streetlight. Their concern for my vision AND my health in general ratcheted up more than a notch. 

How could this be happening? I solicited friend Barry Santini for advice. He immediately told me to set up an appointment with his ophthalmologist friend, Dr. Joseph Bacotti. With the vision appointment already set, I had some blood work done to suss out a sudden onset of extreme fatigue. On a photo shoot the day after the blood test, I was alerted by my doctor I was in an extreme emergency situation with a coma-inducing high blood/sugar number. I was experiencing a complete breakdown of my pancreatic ability to produce insulin. I was suddenly a full-blown Type One Diabetic. The vision issue was due totally to severe swelling of my cornea and the subsequent daily regiment of insulin injections returned my sight to its previous Rx-specific condition.

Bet you thought I was going to now get all medical on you. Nope. I liberally took the chance of this now resolved crisis (I’ve been doing great as a diabetic, reforming my life and diet to the point where my A1C is stable at 5.4) to let you know a main thought through all the duress was wondering how soon I could get my proud eyewear wardrobe up to the parameters of any new Rx. Luckily, there was NO change to my Rx, and that seems to remain the case as I now visit Dr. Bacotti every three months in order to stay completely on top of the diabetic issues as they relate to my vision’s health.

And my precious “art gallery” of personal frames is in no need of prescriptive revamps. I treasure my 22 pairs of eyeglasses and sunwear, loving the dilemma each morning as my face and eyes decide what my personality will be throughout the day.

I’m a diabetic grudgingly addicted to daily injections of insulin. I dutifully take a blood thinner that I’m positive is the reason for my pancreatic failure. BUT… I LOVE my specs… my medical device with the ability to frame my face in a SPECtacularly artistic manner.

James J. Spina