Saturday, August 18, 2012

On Glasses...

Right out of high school I went to college in Buffalo, NY, to become an optician. I actually earned my degree and worked in the field for the past 24 years.

I say that only because I know so many people who go to college for years and get a masters in oceanography and end up being a claims adjuster for an insurance company or something else completely unrelated to their degree. I find that I (and my husband as a matter of fact, who did the exact same thing...!) am an unusual statistic! It really has made us think twice about the way we encourage our kids to pursue their "forever" life goals... however none of this has much to do with the topic...

I think I need some sort of therapy to manage my scatter-hair-brainedness! ...

Ok... I became an optician in 1987... Wow was that a long time ago! Since then I have dispensed glasses with no-line bifocals to my unsuspecting public with complete confidence and reassuring words that they are wonderful, and after a few short weeks they will acclimate to them with no problems and love me forever as the rescuer of their previously unappreciated youthful sight.

And then I turned 43, and needed them myself.

What had I been doing all those years?! I am now an avid hater of no line bifocals! (I can use the word hate because glasses are an inanimate object with no feelings or sensitivities for me to harm.) Up to this point, I solved my "issues" (well, my VISUAL issues. Others are still on the "solutions waiting list...!) by getting glasses that are not for distance or reading, a sort of visual compromise. It had worked pretty well for me for the past few years. No longer.

The above is a sampling (sadly only a partial collection! I am kind of like the shoe sales associate that gave Imelda a run for her money... only in the optical field!) of glasses past and present that I have used in every attempt to Make It Work. My employer did nothing but encourage me with free pairs of glasses and significant discounts to associates. And then add an online website that offers complete glasses starting at $6.95 (are you KIDDING ME??! NO... they aren't!) and the possibilities to solve my issue without  no-lines were endless!!!

I could tell you with complete honesty that my eyes are unusual. Really, they are clinically unusual, not just because they are in my head. 

(Be prepared to be wow-ed and impressed with a bunch of technical words.) 

My right eye is myopic with a slight astigmatism, and my left eye is hyperopic with tons (yes, that is a technical word!) of astigmatism, and now I am a presbyope. That even sounds painful just to say! 

Alas, I have had to bite the optical bullet and get bifocals.

I am not sure if I will survive this.

Suffice it to say I need to make a blanket apology to all the patients I have patronized, pacified, adjusted and (lovingly, of course...) called certifiable in the past. You were so right. I had no idea. Please forgive me.

I once helped a patient who told me it took them two years to finally adjust to their no-line bifocals. I pray I can succeed as quickly!

From here on out, I make no excuse, explanation or apology for the inevitable typos, skewed pictures and bad hair and make up days. I cannot see any of it with any degree of clarity so I am completely off the hook.

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Anita Robinson said...

Janice, what about being 28 with perfect vision, then having your 1st baby, turning 29, and finding out you have cataracts in both eyes, and have to get immediate cataract surgery on your left eye, and start wearing glasses all the time (bifocal on left side) to boot! I'm now 43 now and still have the cataract in my right eye (will probably have surgery in the next couple of years) and now my license is restricted such that I must wear my glasses while driving. :D Are those websites with the cheap glasses really legit?

Vicky Smith said...

I love my progressive lens. Only took me a couple of weeks to adjust to my first pair. A couple of years later it too me slightly longer to adjust to the stronger strength. Only thing better would be contacts - wish I could still wear them.