I survived! And quite nicely, I might add. The "teacher" actually said I was an excellent student, thank you very much! I got the hang of the foreign object insertion pretty quickly, nevermind that those little buggers are slippery and I was on my hands and knees on the eye doctor's floor searching for my new contact lens at one rather embarrassing point in the process.
I wore the first trial pair for about two hours and those were definitely NOT cutting it. The blurriness that was supposed to disappear after 15-30 minutes persisted long beyond that, which is never a good thing when you have to drive the outer and inner loops around Baltimore (note above picture). I finally had to give in and return to my glasses so I could see to get my work done and drive. When I got home, I tried the second trial pair and they were MUCH better. Not nearly as blurry, but still not quite right, which I guess isn't unusual. So I will call the "teacher" tomorrow and see if she can mess with the prescription a bit.
Overall, I'm very pleased. And happy to report that I didn't experience any of the catastrophes about which I was so lovingly warned. I am certain that once we get the prescription just right, we will all be happy, and I'm looking forward to a long and satisifying relationship with my new soft contact lenses!