For the last few years, my eye doctor has been warning me, ‘You’re getting very close to needing reading glasses…’ Now I already wear glasses, so in my mind, all I could think was – BIFOCALS. Each year, during my annual eye exam, he would heed the warning, I’d brush my hand away at him in denial, and life went on.
Well this year, after having some issues with my eyes and headaches, I feared, and was correct, the warning was gone, this year, he insisted I needed bifocals. To prove his point, my doctor ended the exam by having me read from a paper close up, which of course I struggled with until he flipped the glasses on the machine in front of my face and magically, I could see the small print. With all the issues I’d been having related to my eyes, I finally relented, waved the white flag, and got a new prescription.
A week later (yes, it took me a week to accept my fate), I was in the eye glasses shop and had picked out new frames. Seriously, I know it’s an investment, I know they sit on my face literally from the moment I wake up until the moment I go to sleep, but I pick my frames in about five minutes. I try two or three on and I’m done. I have no patience to stand around trying on every pair in the store. But I digress…
After selecting a pair and sitting with the young man who would measure my face, the glasses, and do all kinds of math to get them ready, he finally said, ‘So you’re getting progressives?’
‘No,’ I corrected him, ‘I’m getting bifocals.’
‘We don’t call them that anymore, they’re progressives, there’s no line and nobody will even know.’
And with that, I wasn’t so afraid of them. These things, that I thought would signal to the world my impending death, would only be known to me!
A few days later, they were ready. I picked them up, got a quick lesson on how not to kill myself falling over curbs and stairs (‘Point your nose where you want to look.’- and I was off. As I left the shop, I did feel like folks were staring at me… then I realized I probably looked a little tipsy with my head moving in all directions trying to acclimate myself to my new specs.
The first couple of days weren’t super fun. I had headaches, I felt tired, my brain was trying to learn how these new glasses worked, but each day gets a little better. Truth be told, I’m still adjusting, but now I know it will happen in time, I need to have a little faith and be patient.
As we all start to think about heading back (or, GASP! If you’ve already gone back) – remember what my new glasses have taught me… trust in the process, don’t fight fate, patience is your best friend, and finally, as my grandmother used to always say, getting older is always better than the alternative.