Monday, June 13, 2011

I know, I know, but still...

In what was probably the early 80s, I recall watching an episode of Donahue. The topic was surgery that would correct one's vision. I remember being riveted, swearing that one day, absolutely before I got married, I would have this done. There was no way I was walking down the aisle in glasses.

Always a thinker, I decided in my approximately nine-year-old mind, that by the time I was ready, enough time would have passed to ensure that the procedure was safe.

It would be many years later, but when the opportunity arose, I bought myself some perfect vision. 2003. I beat my self-proclaimed deadline by almost 3 years.

And that's how much I hated my glasses.

I say all of that because, as shallow as it may sound, I really, really didn't want my daughter to have to go through those feelings.

I've stated before that I know what it's like to grow up Black and female. In a lot of ways, that's difficult enough in my mind. But I don't know what it's like to also have developmental delays and a diagnosis that's written all over my face.

I don't's little and common and silly, probably, to even devote this much thought to the issue,'s just one more thing to add to the pile of reasons for people to look at/treat her differently.

Today, after three hellish hours in The Most Popular Opthamologist in the World's office, we came out with a prescription.

And I ordered my baby some glasses.

I'm not normally mushy about a lot of milestones, but this one got me. It didn't feel good. I felt like I had let her down. She's not quite four. It's so early. I'm the one who passed this on to her. guiltguiltguilt.

The doctor showed me what her vision is like untreated. Ugh. Why didn't we know sooner?

She didn't want to try the frames on and I didn't blame her.

But we did the right thing and in two weeks or less, her world will be that much clearer.




LLPirate said...

Really? Glasses already? Ugh! I didn't get my first pair until 5 it was flippin amazing. I don't remember the glasses meanness until I was in middle school so I'd say you've got time to have the surgery which I fully support as one who did it herself it's amazing having perfect eyes:) Let the guilt go! I still remember the day I got my glasses and being really impressed with trees prior I just didn’t know they had individual leaves. I think as a kid you don’t miss what you don’t know or see. No guilt! One thing I do remember very well and it’s a happy memory is getting new glasses meant bubble gum ice cream. The only time of the year I got such a cool treat. I associated glasses with good times and I took extra special care of them because of it. Just don’t by those big awful purple frame things!

Lacia said...

We've been dreading the glasses thing here too, and so far we've escaped it. For what it's worth though, my youngest thinks the cool people wear glasses. At his recent appointment he so desperately hoped that he would get glasses. Unforunately for him, he didn't need them.

And don't blame yourself for Playette needing them. Last time I read about it, the stat was something like 80% (or maybe more...can't remember) of people with DS wear glasses. So blame the extra chromosome, not yourself.

Karly said...

I remember being super sad about the girl's hypothyroid. In retrospect (3 years down the line from starting treatment), I feel a little silly about it. But. Sometimes it just feels like "seriously? one more thing?!" I feel you.

My girl (and the boy) get bad vision from both sides (yay for Lasik all around), so I am sure it's only a matter of time for both of them to join the ranks with some cute specs. I am sure I won't like it a whole lot more than you do. But I bet your little (and mine) will rock out her frames.

Michelle said...

I have to wear glasses when I drive; and should really wear them more often actually! I was hoping Kayla wouldn't need glasses, and so far, fingers crossed, she doesn't. But I remember the feeling when she was dx w/ Celiac ... like Karly said, it felt like 'something else to 'deal' with now too? I think we can empathize with what you're feeling. But you know what? Playette is going to ROCK those glasses. I can just picture how absolutely adorable she will look!

Lisa said...

I never had glasses until I was an adult (even now it's just a mild reading prescription) so I don't know what it's like... but Gary does. Not shallow of you at all. But maybe if she rocks some hip, cool frames (do they make those toddler sized?) it will feel awesome. Maybe? I think she will be adorable and I want pics, please =)

Alison said...

I'm so surprised at all the sadness here in the comments about glasses! It's funny how things feel different in different families. Virtually all of Maybelle's relatives, Biffles and Piepmeiers, wear glasses. Her dad got them when he was really young. And we sort of love them! So we're looking forward to her getting them--it's as if she'll be an official member of the club (the nerd club?) once she's wearing glasses, like the rest of us. She often takes ours off us and tries to put them on herself.

Andrea said...

I am trying to catch up on your blog! I hear what your saying...for what it's worth it is awesome you discovered she needed them so young. Naomi has been wearing glasses since about age three. Until now, I never thought she could grow to dislike them. She has worn them for so long, she looks "different" to me when she is not in them, of course she is beautiful with or without :) I can't wait to see Playette in hers, I know she will look adorable! Thinking of you...really I do. xoxo Andrea