2014-07-03

Four Eyes

glass2
glass1
glass3

I got my first pair of glasses in Grade 2. Initially I was pretty excited. I could finally see that trees had leaves and that homes had numbers. More importantly, I got to skip school a few times to go to the eye doctor and my teacher gave me a pretty embroidered glasses case to make me feel more excited about the whole thing.
I saw the models on the Hakim ads and thought things were going to be just fine if I ended up looking like those ladies. But we couldn't afford the wire frames in the ads, so I had to pick a pair of glasses from the 'free wall'. It came down to a pair of big plastic purpley-pink frames. My mom said they looked nice and that the colour was great with my complexion. I thought that they were trying to sabotage my social life. It was not enough to be in a new country with a difficult name and a bad bowl-cut but now I also had to wear giant pink glasses. Awesome.
I spent most of my elementary school years trying to see how many days I could 'forget' my glasses. I specifically remember going camping with my friend and her family and talking to some cute boys by the service station, feeling ever so grown-up. Except I don't really know if they actually were cute because I refused to put my glasses on.
The summer before high school, I decided that the only way I could ever be popular would be to get a pair of contacts.  My parents had just gotten me new glasses (wire frames... finally) and could not understand this obsession with contacts... or really the obsession with popularity. I told them the contacts were necessary for my athletic career. After all, how could I play basketball with glasses on*?
Too young for a part time job, I handed out fliers in the neighbourhood offering to do any odd jobs for cash. One month into Grade 9, I finally had enough money saved up to pay for my first pair of contacts. I loved those contacts. I have an astigmatism in my right eye and consequently my cheap contacts never sat quite right, but I was blissfully happy to be free of glasses, even if my one contact constantly bothered my eye.
Of course, those contacts never made me the most popular girl in school and never made me particularly athletic either. And one day I would realize that that was just fine.
I would also realize that glasses weren't that bad. When I landscaped full time, I could sleep in three extra minutes if I didn't put my contacts in that day. There even came a day a few years ago when I started to see glasses not as a necessity or a few extra minutes of sleep, but maybe even as a pretty chic accessory.

And here we are, I'm 30 and thanks to ClearlyContacts I got myself a purple plastic pair of glasses. This feels like familiar territory.
I'm pretty sure my mom will say that they look nice and that the colour goes great with my complexion. This time I might believe her. Probably because that bowl-cut has grown out...


*I was really, really terrible...

12 comments :

Linda said...

I refuse to believe that you were ever akward...

Linda said...

Your purple glasses are absolutely lovely. I got my first glasses from the free wall as well and for some odd reason I chose clear, plastic frames. I think I had seen them in a fashion magazine but upon wearing them to school I realized I was more grandma than Gaultier! It took me a long time to see that glasses were a friend, not a foe. We are old and wise now. :o)

De Facto Redhead said...

Your glasses-to-contacts journey echoes my sentiments and memories so closely! I was forced into glasses in Grade 3, and every pair of glasses I had for the next five years were either huge and plastic or huge and wire-frame. I finally got contacts in Grade 9 and refused to wear my glasses anywhere but at home, at night, where I would under no circumstances encounter anyone but my family. But, like you, I have also come around to glasses, lack of sight, and astigmatism. Ha! It's now a rare day that I don't wear my glasses, as contacts are now reserved for running, sunny days, and special occasions. Otherwise, it's all about the four-eyed glory!! :)

DressUpNotDown said...

And now girls with perfect eyesight wear frames just so they can look "chic". :o)

www.dressupnotdown.blogspot.com

Merl said...

awww yenny bo, I love your writing. while you were busy wanting anything but frames on your face, I tried to lie when I went into the optometrist so that I would GET glasses. apparently they have been fooled before and saw right through my tricks. I probably feel the same way about people who wanted braces while I spent years with headgear and a gap in my teeth. grass. is. greener.

ps I miss you come visit dammit.

Leah said...

You look great in purple glasses. Which not many people could pull off. I'm sure the ones you wore in Grade 2 were just as stylish. (We neeeed to see a pic!)

heather gilmour said...

How lovely are these purple glasses!
Pimlico Office cleaners

Anonymous said...

From the male perspective I don't know how much you choose to wear your glasses instead of contacts but for what it's worth you look every bit as stunning wearing glasses as you do without them. You have to plenty of attention when your wearing your glasses. (Glasses are easier and better for your eyes as well)

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