I have terrible eyesight. From the time I turned about 8 years old until I was about 12 years old I wore glasses. I started wearing contacts at 12. I hated my glasses and didn’t want anybody to know that I wore them especially when it came to taking pictures. My sister was getting married the year I turned 12 and of course she wanted me to be a part of her bridal party and of course that meant plenty of pictures. Somehow I was able to convince my parents and my doctor to let me start wearing contacts. Since then I have become much more comfortable with the fact that I am a person with corrective lenses. However, the each year my eyes continue to get worse and that is beginning to freak me out.
My glasses are coke bottles even with the most amount of thinning that can be done to them. Anybody who wears glasses knows what I’m talking about but for those that don’t: when you have a prescription as bad as mine for your glasses the lenses get REALLY heavy. So, the manufacturer will thin the lenses down to reduce the thickness and the weight. Now, they thin mine down to as thin as possible and they still stick out both sides of my frames. My contact prescription is also so bad that they stop making quarter step prescriptions. So for me, if I’m in between prescriptions, like I currently am, I either take the risk of not being able to see as clearly or wear contacts and glasses at the same time. Doesn’t that defeat the purpose?
My glasses are an extension of my being. I have grown to enjoy my glasses. I get to pick out an extra accessory for my outfits and on the days I don’t want that accessory I plop in contact and go. I can’t be without some form of corrective lenses and that’s just me. I have to make sure that wherever I go I have a backup plan. What if my contact falls out? What if my eyes get really irritated and I need to take them out or wash them off? I also have severe allergies so I have to be careful during my flare ups that I have my glasses on hand and contact solution. My allergies cause there to be a build up of gunk on my contacts…and I’m unable to see at that point. It’s a royal pain in the ass, to be completely honest. They have switched my contact type to manage the allergies better but really, it doesn’t do much.
Whenever I travel I have to make sure my contacts are safe. I have to make sure my glasses won’t get broke when the bag man throws my bags around onto the plan if I’m not wearing them. Most of the time I carry these things with me because I’m so afraid that somebody with cause damage to them and I will be left away from home without being able to see. I literally could not walk from the desk I’m currently sitting at to the door without my glasses. I’m completely helpless without my corrective lenses.
It gets worse…my eyes are tremendously sensitive to light. If I walk outside on an overcast day without my sunglasses on it feels like somebody is stabbing ice picks through my eyeballs. Just take a moment to imagine this. So, I ALWAYS have sunglasses on hand. Unless it’s night time, I’m wearing sunglasses. I feel like a fool half the time because I’m the only one. But I’m not in pain, so those are chance I take: fool or pain?
The amount of money I have to spend for these things is ridiculous. I have insurance, so I have assistance in paying for them but I still put out close to $1,000 a year just for contacts, that doesn’t include my glasses. Why are these things so necessary for my livelihood so expensive? This doesn’t include the amount of money that I also have to put out for the sunglasses I need. Good sunglasses are ridiculously expensive but in my opinion for good reason. They are indestructible, very very dark, and thankfully very nice looking. But, add prescription lenses to them and holy hell you have a fortune sitting in a pair of sunglasses. And of course, my insurance company doesn’t cover these yet without them I have more problems with my eyes. Where is that fair?
I will more than likely be blind when I reach retirement age. I enjoy what eyesight allows for us to do and I can’t imagine my life without it. How is that something you cope with? How do you go from being able to see everything in this beautiful world to…blackness. It’s scary. Hopefully I have many years before I really need to worry about this but just the prospect and thought of it makes me want to sit in a corner and cry.