When I was young, I remember my grandmother telling me in Yiddish that I had “sheyn aoygn” (see featured image). For a girl growing up in the 50s, her assessment didn’t mean much to me. My eyes were dark brown, but the Hollywood ideal was a blue-eyed blond. Thus, I pondered what I could do to make myself more attractive in the eye department.
My eyes were dark brown, but the Hollywood ideal was a blue-eyed blond. Thus, I pondered what I could do to make myself more attractive in the eye department.
“Boys don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses,” or maybe they do. They seemed to like Carol a lot in fifth grade, and she had really cool glasses. Maybe I could ruin my eyes by reading in poor lighting? No such luck. In my twenties, I relied on eye make-up — tons of eye liner and mascara — to recapture my grandmother’s assessment of my eyes. I would have to wait until middle-age attacked my eyes to wear those glasses I coveted when I was young but no longer wanted.
Now that I could finally get reading glasses, I hated them. The first problem was, where did I put them down? Easily solved by buying several pairs from the drug store, although they often tended to congregate in one room while I still searched the house. The solution was simple — a chain around my neck to hold them. These chains were beaded and took the place of necklaces, especially at work.
Sadly, time marched on and now I needed bifocals. This is where glasses and I parted ways. After paying for bifocals and graduated lenses, my brain could not make the adjustment to allow me to read. It was time to try mono-vision contacts (one eye for reading and the other for distance). This was a major hurdle for a flincher like me, but nevertheless, I persisted. And for several years, I was happy.
Until … I started to see halos when driving at night and the print on the newspaper began to blur. Yep, it was cataract time. I had only one request for my ophthalmologist: I didn’t want to see his fingers or an instrument approaching my eye. Apparently, for eye #1 I could have used more sedation because I had to fight my flinching reflex. He remembered my reaction when doing eye #2, which I barely remember. And here I am, writing this with no glasses or contacts. Because my brain was used to mono-vision for contacts, that’s what I chose for my cataract surgery.
My distance eye needs a bit of a boost when I drive, but I can keep those glasses in the car. My reading eye only needs help with the fine print in newspapers, so I am back to readers for that. But on my computer, reader, and phone, I’m good to go. Which is a good thing because right now I want to read the newspaper, and I have no idea where those reading glasses are.
Boomer. Educator. Advocate. Eclectic topics: grandkids, special needs, values, aging, loss, & whatever. Author: Terribly Strange and Wonderfully Real.