Contacts

Here are some facts about my eyes:

  • I’m slightly nearsighted, which means I wear glasses, but not all the time.  I’m not wearing them right now, for instance. If I left my glasses at home, I could drive to the grocery store in relative safety if I squinted the whole time.
  • My aunt Sally told me a few years ago that she has but one regret: not wearing sunglasses when she was younger. Sunglasses could have prevented macular degeneration, which she has, and which requires her to get a shot in her eye every month to keep her from going blind. So I wear sunglasses because the idea of getting a shot in my eye makes me feel like there’s no blood in my body all of a sudden.
  • When the eye doctor dilates my eyes, I faint.
  • When I put eyeliner on, my eyes water. When somebody else puts eyeliner on me, they have to hold my head against a wall by bracing their left hand against my forehead, while their right hand smooshes hard against my cheek as they apply the eyeliner, which slips off immediately in the tears that are streaming down my face.  Not many people are willing to do this, but a few people have.

So, knowing these things about my eyes, you might conclude two things:

  1. I only sort of need visual correction.
  2. I might have an eye thing.

So, yesterday I went to the optometrist. I hadn’t been in a long time–not for any good reason, like the time my mom didn’t go for 15 years because she didn’t want them to do that thing where they ping-ed a little metal ball against her eyeball, which is what they did in the old days. I just figured getting my eyes checked was a good idea, so I went.

The doctor asked me if I had ever worn contacts. I told him no, but I would be willing to try them. The kindly, elderly optometrist rummaged around in some drawers and got out a trial set of contact lenses in my prescription. He washed his hands and offered tips on maintaining good eye hygiene. He slopped a contact lens around in his palm with some solution and reached for my face saying, “Ok, young lady, I’m going to put the right one in first….”

I’m not entirely sure what happened between that instant, and the one in which I shoved him.  Or what happened in between the two times discrete times I forcibly, reflexively pushed the 75 year old man away from me. I remember yelling “NO!” at some point, and I have a sense that he seemed annoyed for a very brief instant each time, and I do remember I did a lot of apologizing between shoves, and that he finally gave up, saying, “You have the strongest eye reflex I’ve ever come across.”

So, now I know! I guess I have more of an eye thing than I thought!

But this is all to say that I met somebody new yesterday.  And although it’s a little unnerving that that person is just a version of me, I think it’s useful to know where your HELL NO buttons are.  And evidently, one of mine is in my eye.

Happy spring, you guys. Hope you’re meeting some of your selves you never knew. And that introductions are going smoothly.

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