I'd Believe If I Could See

I've managed to put this day off for 21 years, but it finally caught up with me. I am now the owner of bifocals. Yes, I needed bifocals at the wonderfully young age of 20. But contrary to what you're thinking, it wasn't just vanity that kept me from making the investment in my vision.

Here's the thing. While I am ever so slightly far sighted in my left eye only, I have astigmatism in my right eye. This makes it necessary to have 2 prescriptions; one for reading and one for distance. But back when I was 20, I was working an office job and staring straight ahead at a computer screen 8 hours daily. That reading prescription in the bottom half of my glasses would have done no good whatsoever. Instead, I ended up with both reading glasses and distance glasses. But the past 21 years have changed my eyesight just enough that I have realized it's time for the inevitable.

I didn't know how bad my eyes were until I was at the eye doctor. They're still not bad by any stretch, and I can read road signs and function in society, so I'm not a hazard without eye assistance. But seeing crystal clear is something that obviously hasn't happened in a while. It was rather amazing to me, looking at those letters on the wall from across the room, and seeing the edges without a blur. But while I can read road signs quite well, I am having more and more problems reading things like pill bottles. And nutritional information boxes. And seeing my iPod Touch screen. It appears that my arms aren't long enough to allow my eyes to work like they should. On the worst of days, I have to get the kids involved. They find it highly amusing when they have to hold something out away from me so that I can see it clearly.

I remind them that their day is coming. I remember laughing at my own mom for doing this very thing when I was their ages. It's obviously genetic and it's coming for them. I will have the last laugh. I will be wearing my glasses to see which child it is whose arm isn't long enough, but I will be laughing nonetheless.

It was a long week between the time I had my eye appointment and the day I picked them  up. In that week, I was keenly aware of how blurred most edges were, and how short my arms were. I was actually looking forward to getting my bifocals. Seeing is a good thing.

Today I got my bifocals, and today I was quite disappointed with the result. I didn't realize that they're something one will have to just get used to. I envisioned simply putting them on and seeing everything, all the time, in focus. I was mistaken. I got the progressive bifocal, which means that there is no line, but instead the prescriptions slowly transitions from one to the other. This means that I can see far distances at the clear top of my glasses, mid-ranges in the middle of my glasses, and close up at the bottom of my glasses. It also means that I'm constantly tilting my head up and down to see what I need to see. I look like an idiot.

The worst part, though, is walking. I had no idea how dangerous walking would become with bifocals. In the event that I need to watch where I'm going, I'm looking through my reading prescription, which makes the ground blurry. Big help, that, when I need to look where I'm going. Gardening is a definite "can't wear glasses" occasion because I actually got dizzy with all the blur and and transition.

I'm hoping that in a month's time I'll be so used to all the chin maneuvers and head tilts that I won't
even notice it. One can hope at least, right?

1 comment:

Viv said...

Escalators are the worst. You'll see...sorta.