This post is for Bocatas, who didn’t ask for my advice.
So for my second round of laser eye surgery, the guy who was helping the doctor prep me for the procedure (I’m not sure if he is a nurse or an expeditor of some sort) told me to take flax seed oil pills. He said they’ll help keep my eyeball tissues juicy and that will stave off dryness.
Off-handedly, he mentioned that fish oil pills were actually the best, but that most people were grossed out by fish.
I was like, listen dude, I have been Filipino a long time and I’m not afraid of no fish. I chuckled to myself and muttered, “… desert people.” He looked up at me and said, oh, ok, with a look on his face like, “wow, that’s never happened before.” He told me that I’d be taking these pills for the rest of my life.
The time I ran out. Ever since the procedure, I’ve taken my 1000 IUs of fish oil pills twice a day. One time, I was driving to Vegas through the Mojave National Preserve and my eyes hurt, a stingy, stabby hurt. It took me another day or two to remember that I had let my bottle of fish oil pills run out, and that I needed to buy another. I bought the pills in Vegas, and my eyes went back to being juicy and stab-free.
The lady at work. One of my coworkers had the procedure done a few months before me, and I was picking her brain for information. She said the whole experience was great, which made me feel better about getting my own procedure done. Later, after the surgery, she complained to me that her eyes felt dry, and that drops didn’t help, and that sometimes her eyes felt stabby. I asked her what kind of fish oil pills she was taking, and she said, “What are you talking about?” Apparently the nurse/expeditor didn’t tell her to take the flax seed oil pills. So I told her the whole flax seed oil/fish oil pill story, and she said, oh, I’ll take fish oil pills.
I checked back with her a week later, as she passed me in the hallway. Did the fish oil pills work? Yep, she said, fixed everything, that was it. I’m fine now, she said, and then disappeared down the hallway.
Check-up. I did a one year post procedure check-up with my ophthalmologist. I mentioned that I was taking the fish oil pills and told him about the lady at work. He didn’t seem that impressed; maybe he thinks fish oil pills are not that necessary. He asked me if I ate fish at least once a week, and I was like, chuckle, “… what is it with these desert people? I eat fish minimum fifty times a week! He looked at me and said, you know you’re probably getting enough fish oil through your diet. And then he took a harder look and said, “I would worry about mercury poisoning, if you’re eating that much fish.”
Listen, if I die from eating too much fish, I will die satisfied. If I die from anything, please let it be from eating too much fish. Also, I reduced my intake of top predator fish like tuna down to once a month, and now I eat lower mercury fish like salmon and sardines.
The Dreaded Yellow Bottle. So another time my bottle of fish oil pills ran out, and I bought the yellow bottle instead of the green bottle because it was on sale. I took it for about three days, and then drove back to the pharmacy and bought the green bottle at full price. I don’t know whether the yellow bottle was lower quality or bad product or what, but I felt the stabby eye pain and I didn’t like it.
Text message panic. Another friend from work texted me very early in the morning complaining of stabby eye pain. I told her to wash her eyeballs out and see the doctor. Later I checked back with her; she did see the doctor, and he told her to take some drops. Dryness. At that point I remembered OH RIGHT she had had the procedure too. So I told her about fish oil pills in a series of several detailed messages. I checked back with her a few days later, and she said, yep, all better.
1400 IUs. I emptied out another bottle of fish oil pills, and coincidentally I was in Vegas again. I went with my mama to Costco and I saw that the green bottle was on sale, but not at 1000 IUs; only at 1400 IUs. So I bought it, and took the pills and everything was fine. Once that bottle was empty, I went back to my regular pharmacy in the desert and bought the 1000 IUs bottle. I didn’t feel stabby pain, but I did feel a little dry and my focus was not as sharp. It’s not bad enough for me to go back up to 1400 IUs, but it’s clear to me at this point that I actually need fish oil pills for now.
Maybe I’ll try to wean myself away from fish oil pills gradually, lowering the dose until I stop needing them. When the economy crashes and the republic falls, I don’t want to be caught dependent on these pills without a reliable of supply. Who knows when order will be restored; it might take years for society to recover steady distribution. Maybe I should just start hoarding them.