Our 8-year-old got her first pair of glasses this week.
It was awesome and, for me, a little bit heartbreaking.
She kept telling me all that she can now see — the grass isn’t a fuzzy blanket, there is a girl’s image on the Wendy’s sign, and hey, there are words on that thing hanging over the sink.
My first pair of glasses sat on my nose at the age of 5, and by 8, I was wearing them all the time. Same age as Maria.
Of course, Maria is happy and she looks so cute and so smart in her frames. And, I am elated that such as thing as spectacles exist so that my daughter can see.
But, it is killing me. And, I have to let it go.
You see, I hated wearing glasses. Maybe my daughter won’t. No se.
But, my memories of glasses are these: They bounced on my nose during P.E. and it made me dislike gym class even more. Some of my glasses were so thick and so big (thank you 1980s fashion…) that they cut into my fat cheeks. And oh, how I didn’t like the rain flicking them or the Miami humidity fogging them up.
I got contacts at 12. My mom said that if Amy Carter could wear contacts, so could I. And so, I and easily wore lenses until I was 24, but when I moved to Nashville, allergies killed me and made contacts impossible to withstand. My vanity was sacrificed. I spent the remainder of my 20s in glasses, during a time I was supposed to be all hot and fabulous. Few people can be hot and fabulous in glasses, OK?
LASIK changed my life at 32. A few months after surgery, I snorkeled the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, Australia and in my head, over and over, I chanted “Thank You, God, Thank You, Doctor Ming Wang, Thank You, God, Thank You, Doctor Ming Wang….” over and over and over again. As nearsighted as I had been, I never would have been able to see the miraculous wonder that is that reef. (I was way hotter in my 30s, thankyouverymuch.)
Now, at nearly 45, I have two pairs of glasses again because the vieja eyes are starting. I need them to drive at night and see my computer monitor…and my iPhone and books and magazines.
I imagine my brain, which works in vision, is wondering que carajo is going on with the eyeballs in my head — they’re good, they’re bad, good, badish.
So, I’m keeping my dislike for being a girl in glasses to myself because I have to. My girl doesn’t need my baggage and bottom line, seeing her see clearly is what it’s all about.
But, right now, I’m thinking of shredding that 6th grade picture of me with the huge aviator-shaped glasses with the rose-colored lenses. The pimple on my chin didn’t help, either.