Glasses

I’ve been wearing glasses since I was in grade three. My vision was
already pretty bad by the time my parentes realized I had a problem. I
remember sitting in a window table of a restaurant in Sundridge and
casually asking my parents what the billboard across the street said. I
couldn’t read a giant billboard just across the street – my parents
freaked.

The day I put my glasses on for the first time was a
dazzling day. When I looked at a tree I could see distinct leaves
instead of a green blur. I remember feeling disbelief that this was
what normal people could see all the time. I had reservations
about having to wear my glasses to school. I wasn’t really concerned
about kids making fun of me (nobody did), but I was not the most
coordinated kid in gym glass and I had a huge phobia of being hit in
the face with a ball and subsequently being blinded by shards of glass
from my lenses. I still suffer from a form of this phobia, even though
my prescription is now too high to be made of glass and my lenses are
instead constructed of plastic.

I’ve been wearing these things
for so long now that I consider them to be part of my persona, my body
even, in the way that a book is an extension of my arm. I don’t like to
wear makeup much, so I choose bolder frames, which has become my
"statement". Secretly, I feel a little smarter when I wear my glasses.

But there’s that surgery. And for the reasons above, I have never
considered it. I’ve always felt  I’m a nerd, and glasses are my
thing and that’s that. But I’ve been thinking seriously about
the surgery for a couple of months now. Oh, wouldn’t it be lovely just
to put on a pair of sunglasses without having to first put in my
contacts? Oh, wouldn’t it be nice to workout or do things outside in
the summer without my glasses sliding down my nose? This morning
something happened that cemented in my mind the fact that I will indeed
be inquiring about the procedure at my next eye checkup:

I had run out the door somewhat frantically as I was
running late for work. After about a block I realized I was still
suffering from what seemed like a smudge on my eyeball. This had been
bothering me the whole morning and I had been repeatedly rubbing my eye
to rid myself of this affliction. I assumed it was because I have been
wearing my contacts so much lately. I should point out that I first
thought it was a fingerprint on my glasses and had cleaned them – twice
– before I concluded the problem was my actual eye. I took my glasses
off to establish a better eye-rubbing position when I noticed the tell-tale oily fingerprint. Maybe it was the 7:45 a.m. outdoor lighting that
finally allowed me to see it – I had already checked my glasses 20
times for smudges!  I am now SO blind that I can’t even see
grime on my own glasses when I’m holding them two inches away from my
face.  I’d never survive if our society existed on Darwin’s principles.

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