My eyes have been really bothering me since the beginning of the year. Sore, dry, tired, and when I wake up in the middle of the night, they feel like they are stuck together with paste and I can’t open them, and don’t want to. Sometimes it feels like my lid is stuck to my cornea and I’m going to rip it out if I open my eye.

I’m a troubleshooter my nature, so I’ve been trying to figure out what the problem was. Are they too dry? Is it my office lighting? My font size? Is my prescription in my glasses still good? Do I need that blue light blocking lens again?

Through that process, I found my eyes were really bothered by bright light, especially the LED strip lights I installed around the bottom of my desk and around the back of my monitor. And our house’s humidity level is back down to 24%, even with a bowl of water always on the woodstove. I tried the nightshift yellowing of my screens (phone and computer). I moved my lamps around. I tried different lamps. I moved my monitor closer.

But nothing really helped that much. I was just barely able to get through my work days. I was squinting from my lamps, but not having them on felt worse. As soon as I sat down at my computer screen in the morning, the pain was back in my eyes.

So I finally booked an eye check-up. Which you think I would have done months ago, but it is a bit more complicated when the eye doctor is 6+ hours away. I knew Jeff had to go to Whitehorse this week, so I booked an appointment and tagged along.

We had a nice time in the city. So peaceful and aggrevation free without the dog, actually. We left him to play to his heart’s content at the shelter with some other dogs for a few days. Jeff was dropping off the truck for a day while we were down so we knew it would be inconvenient for one of us to stay in the hotel room with him that day, so this worked out fine.

I’ll jump to the punch line rather than keep you in suspense. My eyes are extremely dry. She said it was from our dry winters and our wood heat. And complicated by rosacea. She’s guessing I have rosacea because my cheeks are usually pink. She put some yellow drops in my eyes and watched my eyes close up when I blinked. She said my tear from the blink was gone before it was halfway covering my eye. The oil secreting glands on my bottom eye lid are all blocked (she said rosacea does this). But otherwise, my eyes are okay and my prescription is unchanged.

Here’s my prescribed fix:

  • Get a humidifier in my office, don’t go crazy, just buy one to do that room to start
  • Shift my desk lights to warmer coloured bulbs rather than cold white (I’ve got one that switches with a remote between warmer/colder light – thanks Brian & Leanne!)
  • Start taking omega-3 oil supplements. These will thin out the oil in the glands in my bottom lids. It’ll take a month to start working.
  • When my eyes are really bad, use a heating pad or one of those microwavable heat bags on my eyes for 5 minutes (but no wet heat) and then massage my eyelids with my fingers
  • Use Blink eye drops as often as needed, but probably not more than 4 times daily.
  • Use the eye drops before bed if that stuck eye thing continues, but they will cause my sleep build-up in my eyes overnight.

I love our eye doctor. Did I ever tell you she was Jeff’s eye doctor in Antigonish before we moved here? She moved to Whitehorse around the same time we moved up here.

We picked up a middle of the road humidifer for my office from Canadian Tire. I have no idea how much omega-3 to take. The pill size varied dramatically, as well as the recommended daily dose on them. I’ll do some research!

On Friday Jeff and I split up to do our errands. The morning was cold, but the sunrise was pretty and pink when I set out on foot.

I had my eye appointment first. Although my prescription hasn’t changed, I decided to order new glasses too. I wear progressives now and mine are getting quite scratched. The thought of breaking them some day, and then having to get to Whitehorse with fuzzy eyes to order replacements, sounds like something I can prevent if I just have a new pair.

Then I walked to a health food cafe that was nearby (thanks to a Google Maps search for coffee shops) and ordered some crazy expensive health fruit smoothie with medicinal mushrooms added for breakfast, because why not!?

Afterwards I walked to the Service Canada office to attempt to renew my passport. I had pictures done here in Dawson, but thought I’d renew it in person, rather than mail it in, since I was in the city. There was no one waiting in front of me! I just had to wait for about 10 minutes for someone to free up. That office has a security guard at the door, and they lock the office when she was on break. I wonder what sort of situations they experience here that require a security guard!? Anyway, my passport has been sent off for renewal and they said I should have my new one in about 3 weeks (although mail takes about 10 days to Dawson, so maybe longer).

Then I walked around some shops and decided since I was in the city, maybe I should get that uneven haircut I gave myself a fix! I stopped in one place to see if they had any walk-in appointments available but they were all booked up, but they did recommend another salon nearby. How nice of them! I walked over there and they had an opening in 2 hours. Sign me up!

To pass the time, I walked through more shops. The only thing I bought was this book:

Nahganne, Tales of the Northern Sasquatch

While reading books written in the north, Yukon and Alaska, I’ve read several similar tales of sasquatch encounters. I’m fascinated! Maybe I’m a squatch’er! Even the legends of our local aboriginals have these stories. Could it be!? I took the book to Tim Horton’s and ordered a large chai tea, sat down, and started flipping through the reports. There are some recent ones right around Dawson City and the Klondike region!

Soon it was time for my hair fix. My hairdresser was a sweet young lady from India. What a lifestory she has! She wanted to leave India for Canada and found her first job in Dawson City! She flew into Dawson, in the winter! From +40C to -40C she said! It was such a shock! She said she didn’t have the necessary winter gear, and didn’t even have a Canadian SIM card for her phone, because you can’t buy those up here. She worked at her new job for one week and then everything shut down for Covid. Her husband and son were supposed to follow her by 3 months, but then everything was locked down.

She spent 3 months here in Dawson, meeting almost no one due to the lockdown. She then moved to Whitehorse and found a new job. Her family finally joined her just this fall. She loves it in the Yukon, people are so nice and friendly, but she said she just can’t get used to the cold. She said her husband came in October and said to her, oh come on, it isn’t that bad, you’re too skinny, you don’t eat enough, that’s why, and she said, you just wait! And she was right! He is also having a difficult time with the cold. But her son just loves the snow and has adapted well.

She was so kind to say I did a good job on that haircut I gave myself. haha! She evened it up and trimmed the sides up a bit higher for some style. It’s very nice! I took her card when I left so we can chat again next time I’m shaggy!

Eventually Jeff and I met up to do some joint shopping and then had an early dinner. Look at this pizza!

While the drive down was a bit snowy and slippery, it was a beautiful sunny drive back. We picked up Hank and he was completely exhausted. Sounds like he had a fun few days of play!

Now, let’s see if I can rehydrate these eyeballs.