How Did I Become The Person I Used To Laugh At?

Please catch my newspaper column each week in the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Dayton Daily News and other newspapers across Ohio.  Here’s this week’s column:

Not me.

Was never going to happen.

That was something that happened to plenty of other people that I knew, just not me.

Fine, confession, I felt just a touch superior that I didn’t have to go there.

     I was so busy feeling better than those other people that I didn’t see it creeping up to grab me.

I am now one of the millions who can’t go without.

I’m talking about the dreaded crutch of…

Reading glasses.

My Glasses High Horse

Go ahead and judge me, but I had good reason for riding high on my sanctimonious high horse. I’ve never worn prescription glasses of any kind. That was my best friend, Cyndi, in 3rd grade who had to haul her electric boiler for sleepovers just to sterilize her contact lenses. I couldn’t see what she wasn’t seeing. Was all clear from where I stood.

I’m the only member of my immediate family who has never needed glasses. “I just want to be able to wake up in the morning and see what time it is,” my brother explained before undergoing Lasik surgery. “Must be pretty bad to let someone put lasers in your eye,” I said in my not so compassionate little sister tone, that somehow does not change no matter how old we get.

I used to snicker at friends as we went out to dinner, who couldn’t read the menu without pulling them out.

Dr. Doom & Gloom

My own opthamologist promised me doom and gloom, saying the moment I turned 40 it would be like my eyeballs fell out of my head and would instantly need reading glasses.

Pshaw. 40 came and went. I could see fine.

It probably wasn’t until about 47, where one day in the drug store while waiting for a prescription to be filled, I spied a display of reading glasses. I thought, “Just for kicks, let’s see what the world looks like with these silly things.”

What do you know?

Sure, I was just starting with the baby training wheel glasses 1.25 power. Things that I didn’t know were a little out of focus suddenly became a little sharper.

Dipping My Toe

I bought one pair, you know, just to have.

What a mistake.

What started as “I’ll just keep a pair around, just for kicks” has blown up into a full on reading glasses addiction.

That tester pair in the drug store was my gateway drug to reading glasses addiction.

What do you when you become the person you used to turn your nose up at?

One, you get humble.

Two, you buy glasses. Lots of glasses.

My Addiction

I’ve become HER–that person who can’t leave home without them. There are so many glasses planted around my house, car, purse and life, I could sprout a farm if they were seeds.

“Check this out,” from my daughter is met with, “Hold on I need to get my glasses.”

Who just said that? My grandmother? No, me!

Reading glasses–you are my love, my elixir, by crutch, my best friend. Without you, I’m well, useless.

Am I the only one? Are you hooked, as well?

Company Is On The Way

I do have comfort knowing I will soon have some company.

My slightly younger husband is where I was a few years ago. “Don’t need those,” he’ll grunt when we go to a dimly lit restaurant. No glasses, but I notice how he moves the decorative candle a few inches closer to make things brighter. There was that time about a month ago where he was “borrowing” a pair of mine just for paying bills and such.  Then suddenly, he quit, like a new smoker who put down that first cigarette determined he wasn’t going to get sucked into a lifetime addiction.

Uh, huh. Hang on, Big Guy. Glasses are in your future. I can see it so clearly from here. Especially, when I put on my higher power 2.0 magnification lenses.



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How Did I Become The Person I Used To Laugh At?

by DarynKagan time to read: 3 min