Mistake number one was the time of the appointment. It was at 4.30pm and really, I should have gone for a much earlier appointment. Mistake number two was going to a couple of shops before the appointment. With the boredom of the shopping and the time of day, Aled wasn't very co-operative at the opticians.
Before going to the appointment I had a look around on the net to find out the process of an eye test for small children and for a video or photos that I could show Aled to prepare him. To be honest, I didn't find much at all. The little information that I did find said that for small children they don't use the big machines, but tend to test their eyes manually. Thinking this was the case, I was quite surprised when we were taken in for Aled to look into the machine.
Not surprisingly, Aled wouldn't sit still and keep his head in the right place for the assistant to get a reading from the machine. (Honestly, I think that was a bit much to ask of any four year old, let alone one with additional needs!) After about 10 minutes of trying this, the assistant got the optician, who, after trying himself for 5 or so minutes decided that it wasn't going to work.
We were then taken into the opticians office and the optician put on the 'funny' glasses. The letter board is now a computer generated one, where the optician was able to isolate a single letter in different sizes. With the glasses on and covering each eye in turn the optician was able to get a bit of a look at Aled's eyes. What he did manage to find is that Aled has an astigmatism and that he is long sighted. Unfortunately, that was about all the optician was able to determine.
Apparently, when a person is long sighted, dye needs to be put in the persons eyes to be able to fully assess them. As Aled was already being unco-operative, the optician felt that it would be too much for Aled to have to do at that time and the best course of action now is to refer Aled to the eye hospital.
So, the outcome for us is that we know Aled needs glasses, but we now have to wait for the referral to go through and for an appointment to come in from the eye hospital. From previous experience with the eye hospital for Noah, I know that it can take months for an appointment to come through, I'm just hoping that it will come through quicker seeing as Aled starts full time school in two weeks along with the knowledge that Aled does need glasses.