Thursday, 22 January 2015

2015 x 23/365

I AM...

FINALLY spectacle and lens-free!!! :) 
It's been slightly more than a month since the amazing procedure and trust me, 
it's the BEST decision I've ever made - BEST gift I've ever given myself - BEST thing I've ever done for myself (quoted by my doctor and i strongly agree xx) 

Not exaggerating at all, I think only people who are short sighted will understand my frustration. I've battled with myopia since Primary 3 or 4 and wore spectacles for 10 years, contact lens for around 7 years. I remember I thought it's quite cool to wear spectacle because majority of my friends back in primary school wore it and they were.. 'cool' HAHAH wtf especially when they brought out the spectacle case and clean it with the cloth HAHA. I thought it's so cool to wear it at that time and so happy to receive my first nerdy specs (circular ones wth) - even showed off to one of my girlfriends then. How wrong.

And then i started wearing lens because it was the 'in' thing then (Lower secondary) plus I played Netball and had SJAB training. So I figured lens was more convenient. And it was. Many years went by, and though i'm thankful for lens, I HATED IT. Forever grumpy because my eyes felt dry and i had to use the eye drop every few hours. I would have to keep the eye drop with me ALL THE TIME because I would need it at any point. Most of the time, I would have to remove the lens in the middle of the day in school or during trainings because I simply can't stand it. During training camp or event work, I've to put on the lens as early as 5AM and only get it to remove it at 12 midnight (that's more than 12h). That feeling was horrible. Yes, I could jolly wear spectacles but it's so not convenient. The lens of the spectacles will turn foggy due to sweat and what's not, and it's forever sliding down my nose. Annoying. Unglamorous. 

Sometimes, when i'm wearing lens before heading out, i'll accidentally drop it on the bathroom floor and have to struggle to find my spectacles, wear it, before i'm able to find that transparent shit. Wasted time and made my morning really bad. :( 

I moved on to colored lens during poly days and honestly, I like it. Especially those brown ones which were very natural yet had visible color. I even bought a few pairs from BKK and I really love them! (PS. I would even consider buying 0 degrees when I go BKK the next time. For vanity purpose, hahaha) But unfortunately, none of those lens would make me feel comfortable the entire day. Most of the time, I can't wait to get back home so that i could remove it. I hated being outside for long (those gatherings) because my eyes felt so dry and lousy. It made me feel grouchy and frustrated at the most trivial matter. 

I knew I'll DEFINITELY go for Lasik one day. It's just a matter of when, where and the cost. Plus my mom encouraged me to do so because she did hers 10 years back. NO REGRETS, ever. So I'm going to document this experience because I want to remember it forever. ;)

Finally, in 2014, I made the decision to be free from frustration and grumpiness. 
Background Story: Actually it started with a good sister of mine who went for her procedure in June 2014 and she was raving so much about it. I had wanted to go for it then too, but too much was on my plate - commitments. She mentioned that we would need a couple of weeks to rest our eyes so I didn't want to rush too. No matter what, eyesight is priceless. 

Though I knew I couldn't do it at that time, I started my research - basically i was only considering the clinic (Let's call it Clinic X) my sister did hers because I strongly believe in word-of-mouth and most importantly, I got to trust the doctor. 

My mom, on the other hand, recommended Dr Julian Theng (Eagle Eye Centre - EEC). He wasn't her doctor but she saw him on TV and said he's a ' celebrity ophthalmologist' who treated many local artistes. What a reason, hmmm. But of course, I google reviews about him and omg, everyone said he's AWESOME. Frankly, the doctor at Clinic X has many good reviews too and his rates are slightly cheaper than EEC. So I've decided to go ahead with Clinic X and booked an appointment. One of the other reasons why I didn't want to go ahead with EEC was because the staff told me Dr Theng would only be available in February 2015 and I would only want him to perform the procedure instead of other doctors. I didn't want to wait + February is curriculum teaching weeks so not very convenient for the procedure. I wanted a good timing for me to have it and rest too.

All was settled with Clinic X till.. 
the staff at EEC dropped me an email to say that they have a slot in mid December, but assessment and procedure can't be on the same day which means I've to make two trips. I'm totally fine with it though. So I discussed with my mom and decided to change to EEC @ Mount Alvernia. Sorry, Clinic X!! :( 

So I made an appointment for pre-assessment on 17th December and procedure on 23rd December. Pre-assessment is to check if our eyes are suitable for Lasik and to speak with their Lasik counselors on the procedure, after-care and to answer any of our enquiries. 

All seemed good and I was mentally prepared for it. One day before my pre-assessment, on the 16th, I got a call from EEC telling me that they've a slot for procedure on 17th afternoon and they've reserved it for me. I just woke up from my nap and... what?! Not prepared at all but I guess, get it over and done with. I'll have to do it sooner or later, anyway. 

17th December 2014 - Day 1

0915h || Pre-assessment scheduled early in the morning and I was there earlier than the appointment time. (Perks of going out with Mom) So we registered and waited for the various eye tests. 

Was given this information kit to read while waiting. 
Basically, the kit is very detailed with the process of procedure, pre and post surgery, cost and the declaration form. 

The clinic was very crowded despite it being a weekday morning. 
So we got some muffins and coffee and sat at the back to enjoy our breakfast.
One of the best things about EEC - complimentary muffins, biscuits and hot drinks. #foodmakestheworldgoround ;)

Was called not long after for eye tests. I was brought to the back of the clinic for eye screening such as testing my degrees, eye pressure and thickness of my cornea. Fast and painless, just got to listen to the optometrist's instructions and that's it. 

Next, the optometrist dilated my pupils using some eye drops. This is for the checking of eyes by the doctor at a later time. I guess this was the most uncomfortable part of the pre-assessment. It felt as if shampoo went into my eyes - that sting. Couldn't really open after a while. The eye drop also kind of caused me to have problems focusing on near objects such as menu or books. But nothing too serious. 

Second last stage of pre-assessment is to meet the counselor. She explained to me the two different procedures - EpiLasik and Femto Bladeless Lasik. I was set on doing EpiLasik because that's what my sister did. However, she told me that I might experience pain after the procedure for 3-5 days and my daily life would be affected. I didn't want that because I had tuition classes (can't teach with the pain), meetings and I was going to Batam the same weekend. So i went with Femto Bladeless in the end. 

She also explained the process which I'll be going through (in the info kit) but all i cared about was.. 'will i feel any pain' HAHA that's more important, or rather, MOST important. She assured that I would not feel anything except for this 25s of black out which could be scary and I might panic. So I was mentally prepared for that. Honestly, for myself, I wasn't very concerned about the process because most importantly is for the doctor to know hahaha plus my mind went blank when I was lying on the operating bed. 

Last stage = meeting the doctor. He looks the same as TV. HAHAHA. 
He checked the nerves of my eyes and told me that he's confident of a successful procedure.
That was very reassuring because I'm very afraid of death and health issues. 
So after clearing some doubts and asking (YET AGAIN, I AM ANNOYING) if i would feel any pain, we ended with a 'see you in the afternoon' :) 

The entire pre-assessment took around 2 hours and my procedure was scheduled in the afternoon at 1530h so we had a couple of hours to spare. Went for lunch before heading back to the clinic. (:  

1500h | Reached the clinic earlier and was given two types of pills. I only remember one is Arcoxia which is an anti-inflammatory drug. As for the other pill, don't remember what it was for - I just took the medication as instructed (couldn't be harmful anyway) and waited for my turn. :) 

1540h | I was brought into this pre-surgery room to get prepared for the procedure. The nurse (?) helped me into the gown and orange crocs (most hideous ever despite being one of my favorite colors). She's the sweetest to even help me with photo-taking HAHA. She then dripped some anesthetic eyedrops, which again, felt like shampoo getting into my eyes. I hate myself for asking but I just had to ask again if it hurts. She assured me with more anesthetic eyedrops hahaha wth. I was let in after the previous patient came out and there, it's starting soon!

I was led in to the operating theatre and was instructed to lie down.
This is bad but I had to ask Dr Theng again if it will hurt. Damn, bitch, you're annoying.
He must be thinking of that -I'm positive- hahaha. But he's such a sweetheart and kept reassuring me that it won't hurt. So I just lie there comfortably and let him perform his magic. 

One eye took less than 10 minutes in my recollection. TOTALLY.. PAINLESS.
Throughout the procedure, Dr Theng would tell me what's going to happen next & what to expect. Honestly, I feel that theory was so much scarier than "practical "
The blackout which I was most worried about, was.. NOTHING as compared to Dialogue in the Dark. In fact, it was far less than what I expected - no big deal. And throughout the entire process, Dr Theng would ALWAYS encourage me, telling me that everything is going well and it would be over in no time. 

I think the most " panicky" part would be when he had to wash my eye with a substantial amount of water. What happened was he/she (i've no idea who) poured water on my eye - obviously, with my eye opened. It feels as if I am in a swimming pool with my eyes opened. But, that feeling was gone in less than 5s.

One of the stages which amazed me was when he had to put on the bandage lens (protective contacts). I can literally see the lens (looked the same as my transparent ones) entering my eyes. Doesn't hurt of course, but it felt so amazing to "see" it.

Almost towards the end of the procedure..

(credits to EEC)

I was told to look at the clock on the wall and tell him the timing.
It was.. wow, not exactly sharp clear but good enough for me to make out the time. 
There, the most gentle doctor ever, Dr Julian Theng

First selfie after the procedure, while waiting for my medication.
Couldn't focus clearly due to the lens but no big issue - still able to see my surroundings pretty clearly.

Collected my medication and settled my next appointment which was the next day. 
Everything came in a yellow -sigh- pouch which consisted of -

Protective UV Shades : To be worn when outdoors. Basically to protect the eyes from the harmful UV Rays. Quite chio, I like wearing it HAHAHA

Protective eye goggles : To be worn while sleeping ( i wore it for first week and gave up after that because it always ended up on the floor whenever i wake up in the morning hahaha) 

Refresh lubricant eyedrops : For dry and itchy eyes. Still on this eye drop till this day because I'm having dry eyes. Not sure if i'm getting too reliant on it so I'm slowly trying not to use it. Can't use it forever anyway. Just hope the dry eye issue could go away soon 

Vigamox & Pred Forte : Vigamox is the eye drop used to treat bacterial infections of the eyes while Pred Forte is used to treat inflammation (all from Google). Had to use both eye drops concurrently every three hours for the first week. Was cleared of these drops on the day of my 1-week Post Lasik Review but i used it for a couple more days before i got lazy. 

In my Cyclops shades.

I would say there isn't any side effect because I could still take the public transport home right after the procedure. :) Didn't feel uncomfortable or whatsoever. Went home and crashed. 

18th December 2014 - Day 2

Had to return to the clinic for 1-Day Post Lasik Review to check for any infection and also to remove the bandage lens. YAY which means my vision will be much clearer and sharper. 
Thankfully appointment is in the afternoon so I could sleep in. 
No discomfort at all, no pain, nothing. :) 

The review took less than 15 minutes and the removing of the lens was short and sweet that I didn't realize Dr Theng has done it. /awesome

Lifetime Care Plan which is like a warranty for my eyes. 
But i do hope i'll never ever need to use it. 

Dr Theng's book on Presbyopia which he gifted to my Mom because both Papa Lim & herself are keen to treat their presbyopia and considering to look for Dr Theng too. :)

He even gave me the pictures they took as "souvenir."
The sweetest doctor with the best service. 
Maybe I'm so naive because obviously they've to be nice and all to earn my money. But honestly, good service is so hard to find nowadays. Service staff always look grumpy (can't even be bothered to pretend to be nice) as if I owe them a million dollar. So I do appreciate their sweetness. :)

Vision was much clearer and I could see everything with "higher definition."
After review, even went down to BB complex to run some errands all by myself. 
All's well and good. :)

19th December 2014 - DAY 3

Post Lasik : DAY 3

Life went on as per normal.
Rested the entire day and went for tuition class in the evening.
I'm so glad that this procedure did not affect my daily life. Can't imagine if i were to stay in for a week or so, with nothing to do :(
I remember Mom did the older version of Lasik and her procedure got to be one eye at a time. So she had to survive with one eye with blur vision because no spectacles + no lens prior to surgery. Speaking of that, I remembered one of my poly lecturers said that they did both eyes separately so that in any case something happened to one eye, the patient still have the other eye to see. Okay..? Not very comforting.

But nevertheless, so thankful I didn't have to go through all these trouble.

19th December 2014 - DAY 4

Post Lasik : DAY 4

Went out early in the morning in my Cyclops shades for AGM.
Vision is very clear and it amazes me (even till today) that I could see everything far without the use of spectacles or lens. It definitely feels like my eyes and I were given a second life. 

20th December 2014 - DAY 5

Post Lasik : DAY 5

I'm SO SO happy that the procedure didn't affect the family trip. 
I did ask the counselor prior to my surgery if i could still go ahead with Batam because if not, I would schedule it on 23rd (the initial date- one day after Batam) instead as we've paid and i didn't want it to go to waste. She assured me that I would be good to go by then but just no Water activities as the water might be contaminated and my eyes would get infected with germs. Not a problem at all because The Family didn't plan any water activities :)

On the day itself, I truly think my worries are unfounded because I was more than ready to go off with my shades protecting me and eye drops by my side. :)

23rd December 2014 - DAY 7

Post Lasik : DAY 7

The day of my 1-Week Post Lasik Review with another doctor, Dr Goh, who apparently is known to be the most handsome doctor in EEC. (Quoted by receptionist) 
Nothing much, he said everything's perfect and I'm "off " using Vigamox and Pred. 
No more hearing the alarm beep every 3 hours. Hahaha.

The end of my Lasik journey and everyday, I'll wake up feeling so thankful that I made the right choice then. I'll just randomly look around or look up to the sky whenever i'm outside and feel so amazing that I could see everything so clearly. I no longer have to wake up earlier to put on my lens, no longer have to struggle with uncomfortable eyes the entire day, no longer have to deal with foggy spectacles, no longer have to put on lens before make up & no longer have to smudge my eye make up with the eye drops. There's so many "no longer " that I can't put into words.

True enough that it isn't the cheapest thing around (spent around 3.5k), but the convenience is priceless. 3.5k divide by MANY MANY years of convenience and money spent on lens - I think it's super worth it (analogy of shopaholic). Plus the service at EEC is so worth the money & Dr Theng is the sweetest doctor around. 

THANK YOU EEC & Dr Theng for giving me (and my eyes) a second chance and BIG LOVE to yall for making this whole experience such an amazing one. NO other options for Lasik except EEC & Dr Theng. 100% guarantee. ;)

Of course, most importantly, THANK YOU Mom who accompanied me to every visit to the clinic & helped me to snap pictures during the procedure. Also, (+ Papa Lim) allowing me to go ahead with this surgery. 

CHEERS to 6/6 vision xx

PS/ For more information/questions,

Mail me:


Wechat/Line/Telegram: loveatbravery (for faster replies)


  1. Hi Charmayne ,

    Just did my lasik with Dr Julian last week.
    Did you experience blurred vision even after day 7 when looking at computer screen?


    1. Hi Emily! No I didn't experience any form of blurred vision ever since the bandage lens were removed one day after the procedure. Have you been to the 1-week post lasik review? You might want to consult Dr Theng as the condition differs for each individual. Hope it helps! (:

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  3. Hi Charmayne! I am going to EEC for surgery! Would you mind me using your name as referral?


  4. Hi charmayne, I have appointment next week at EEC with DR Theng. May I use your name for referral discount? Thanks in advance :)

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  7. Hi Charmayne! I am planning to go to EEC for surgery and would appreciate it if I can use your name for referral discount. My email address is if you have any personal information that has to be shared privately for the discount!

    Thank you so much and I am glad you had a good recovery :)

  8. Hi charmaine, I already booked an appointment to go for lasik. May I use your NRIC and name for referral discount. My email is
    Thanks alot!
    Appreciate your help in this matter

    1. Hi Charmayne,

      I appreciate your reply to my referral request. Thanks alot for your help.
      Will support your blog!


  9. Hi Charmayne! I am planning to go to EEC for surgery and would appreciate it if I can use your name for referral discount. My email address is if you have any personal information that has to be shared privately for the discount. Thanks So Much!!

  10. Hi charmaine,
    Thanks for your referral. I went back for review. I got left 0 degree and right 25 degree astigmatism. I am happy with my result with Dr Theng.

  11. Thank for sharing your LASIK surgery experience with us.

  12. Just want to drop by and say "Thank you Charmayne!!"
    It is because of your blog that I got to know Eagle Eye, Dr Julien Theng. It is from reading your Lasik experience that I decided to research more of Dr Julien Theng. I sincerely feel that it is one of my best decision to have my Lasik with him and also due to your friendly referral that makes it all easier. It is really a Life Changing point of mine.
    Once again, thank you very much Charmayne!