So I discovered at the end of second grade that I was basically blind. Well it wasn’t so much a discovery as it was something we stumbled on. I was headed to brownie camp and as part of that I had to have a physical and I remember the nurse asking me to read the sign on the wall. I had to ask her where the sign was because I didn’t see a sign (or a wall for that matter). She told me to then walk as close as I needed to read the sign, so I walked closer and closer until I was about 12 inches away and proudly declared the letter “E”. Forget the other letters, even at that close I still couldn’t see them. I’m sure she and my mom exchanged looks although I couldn’t see them.
It wasn’t long after that that I found myself at the eye doctor and before I knew it I was picking out my first pair of glasses. They were a purpley-blue with little hearts on the corners that had a little jewel in the center of the heart. They were awesome. But I remember what it was like to put those on for the first time. It was a whole new world. I remember asking my parents “did you know you can actually see individual leaves on the trees?”
I loved being able to see and didn’t mind glasses….until 6th grade and then forget it. And as typical of all middle schoolers vanity was important to me and I wouldn’t be caught dead out in my big thick glasses. I got my first pair of contacts in 6th grade. And I wore contacts all the time. All through high school, college, med school, residency and so on. I remember the dread I felt when my eyes got an allergic reaction to the soft contacts I was trying and I was forced to wear my glasses for weeks early in high school. And ultimately the only thing my eyes wouldn’t react to was gas perm contacts. All through residency I’d wear those contacts as long as I could even on my 36 hour shifts until my eyes couldn’t take it any longer and then I’d put my glasses on.
And now as a mom of 3-soon-to-be-5 the last two years I’ve completely changed….its just so much easier to wear my glasses, I have a pair that I mostly like, but really I don’t care what I look like most of the time…i.e. I’m either in yoga pants, running clothes or scrubs, so I’m not really winning any fashion contests any day of the week anyway. I finally found a pair of daily wear that I’m not allergic too, I ordered 90 lenses last year for each eye….and I still have 10-15 left.
All that to say, I found myself in the same eye doctor’s office with the same eye doctor and same front desk assistant that was there when I was in 2nd grade (to say they’ve watched me grow up would be an understatement)….only this year with my own 2nd grader picking out his first pair of glasses. Luckily his vision is WAY better than mine, but that’s not saying much, he still needs glasses. He tried on a number of different pairs and finally settled on one.
They should be in this week or next, but as we were driving home I asked him how he decided and what he liked about the pair he picked. He said “Well mom, they are comfortable, and they are black and green, and that’s what color a ninja would pick”. Really what other criteria do you need? And as long as he’ll wear them, I’ll take it.