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Life in Focus

Dr. Rob Szeliga moved to Thompson’s Station with his family when he was 15 and then returned after graduating in 2005 to open Spring Hill’s first optometrist-owned private practice. Spring Hill Eyecare originated as a 1,200 square foot office with only his mom and sister as employees. He then added his other sister as his third employee and soon doubled the size of his office space in 2008. In 2018, he built an award-winning 8,300 square foot destination for eye care on Highway 31. Now he employs over twenty team members including two other full-time associate doctors, Dr. Virgilio Gozum and Dr. Kathryn Beckman.

Dr. Rob played baseball in both high school and college. When he was 16, he took the mound to pitch and could not even see the catcher’s signals. So his mother took him to the eye doctor to get him contact lenses which significantly impacted the way he played. He couldn’t believe how many more details he could see like the stitches on the ball. Imagine trying to play the game you love, but not being able to focus because of your vision. Now Spring Hill Eyecare has a unique 900 square foot Sports Vision Training gym. During 45-minute sessions, athletes can improve their depth perception, peripheral awareness, visual memory, reaction, time eye-hand coordination and more to take their game to the next level.

Around the same time he was playing baseball in high school, his mom was diagnosed with glaucoma. When he would go with her to eye doctor appointments, he gained an interest in optometry and knew he was going to make it his career. Because your sight affects everything you do, it’s important to take care of your eyes. Dr. Rob says, “It’s a great career because about every 20 minutes I get to change the way someone sees the world.”

When patients visit, they can see how part of local history is ingrained in the new building. On the property used to stand an 1870 farmhouse and greenhouse. Shortly after getting his driver’s license, Dr. Rob’s parents would send him there to purchase fresh vegetables for dinner. When the farmhouse could not be saved, Dr. Rob and his wife scoured everything from attic to cellar collecting bits of history, from fireplace mantels to wavy glass windows and doors, to repurpose and use in the new office.

In addition to seeing patients, Dr. Rob gets out of his comfort zone by traveling to different cities as an industry consultant to give lectures about new contact lenses or equipment. By consulting for these companies, he can sometimes get new technology months in advance. He admits, “I tell my patients I can offer you these contact lenses before anyone else because I suffer through my fear of public speaking.” He refers to Spring Hill Eyecare as a one-stop-shop because they offer everything except for major surgeries (for those they perform the pre- and post-op care). They even have an entire suite dedicated to dry eye treatments.

He and his wife are getting ready to build their dream home in Thompson’s Station. They have their hands full with three kids who do numerous extracurriculars. He says, “We have a 16-year-old that participates in travel baseball, cross country, wrestling, hurdles, piano, guitar, and saxophone. We have a seven-year-old who does piano lessons and gymnastics. He jokes, “Then we have a four-year-old who’s not allowed to do anything yet because we don’t have enough time.” The joke’s on him as his wife just informed him, she is signed up for tap dance and ballet. They love raising their kids where he grew up.

Spring Hill Eyecare has come a long way since 2005. Dr. Rob and his team are proud of all they have accomplished to give the community the best eye care possible. In turn, giving the community a better quality of life… and more accurate fastballs. Come “See What You’ve Been Missing!”

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