seeing the world through opaque eyes*
i have been wearing prescription eye glasses since i was seven years old.
my parents discovered that something was wrong with my eyes when i asked them why their heads were so small and when i watched the tube, i was so close that i was kissing the screen.
my affliction also boggled my parents for i had it at a very young age. there was no question that having impaired eyes was an undeniable genetic quality of the family. but it came too early.
at first, the eye doctors denied me of clear vision because the head optometrist didn’t believe that i could already read when i was four years old. they had me taking pills that made my head implode. the headaches were so bad that i was always banging my head on my table in my prep class. i was also made to take eye drops that made everything look even more blurry.
my eyes were so shot then. i remember that all my writing exercises were all wrong for all rounded letters like a, c, o, b, s, e were all o’s. all the slender letters like the l’s, the t’s, the i’s and the j’s were all the same. i was so messed up. it was a good thing that my homeroom teacher knew of my problem that i was free to sleep in class when my the headaches came. i was made to sit in the back. it was a good thing for my classmates didn’t see me sleep. it was also a bad thing for i also didn’t see anything written on the blackboard.
i had to endure everything until i was seven, when the eye doctors were really convinced that i could already read. they found out that i had astigmatism and that my poor vision was deteriorating. they had me wear progressive horn-rimmed glasses with thick lenses.
since then, my glasses were made a fixture on my face. it was my new eyes.
it was also then that i realized that my glasses was the most important part of my body. aside from the fact that they were expensive, i damn needed them. i needed them so that i could enjoy my books, comics and television better.
i have gone through many pairs of eyes glasses. most of them were either crushed and mangled when i was in grade school. i used heavy-duty double-bridged frames that not only restricted the growth of my face but it also made me look really nerdy, which at the time, i was not. i also had metal frames but these did not last long for they were so bendable.
i was a hothead runner back in gradeschool. i was one of the lead runners in our Agawan-Base matches against other classes. in other words, either i was the bait for other the opposing runners or the saviour for our captive comrades. but most of the time, the glasses restricted me. i couldn’t move too much for the glasses might fall off. i avoided much contact for one wrong move and goodbye eyes. and because of the thick-frame, i had so many blindsides.
so, i guess, the glasses had made me into a real nerd. it came with the package. by high school, i was a full-blown nerd. i didn’t do sports. i did not go out for i was not happy with my looks. all i did was read. i was a total nutjob.
come college and all. my plastic pair of eyes have well become a part of me. i didn’t want to try other things for i was more comfortable with my glasses. and it was a good thing that in college, having glasses is a must. you look more intelligent and amiable to everyone.
then, i was working. wearing plastic eyes were still okay. but i have been doing things that needed me to put my eyes aside. but still, i could not take them off.
fear is the only reason i could think of that prevented me taking these blasted lenses off. it was the fear that i couldn’t see better, fear that i would hurt my precious eyes, fear that i would leave a good part of me that had made me more comfortable for who i was. i still wanted to see. my plastic eyes made me see things clearly and to take it off was to let go of everything and i didn’t want that.
last week, i started using contact lenses. i admit that until today, i am still uncomfortable. it burdens me to put it in and then it takes hours for me to take it off. i hate it when i have to blink many times to make my eyes water so the filmsy contact lenses won’t dry up.
i don’t know why i did the jump. the fear is still there. it was not an implusive decision but the move was smooth and it was as if things were made to be that way. i don’t know what moved the universe to sideline the fear. i don’t know if it was because of her and the thought that there was no longer a chance for me to get her was part of the reason. i don’t know if it was some weird cosmic nudge to make me get walking ahead.
i was made to move. i was made to change.
this week, a friend also had a life-turning realization. the friend said that for every drastic change in one’s life, one has to change. the friend said she was changing. she really did. and like me, she was recuperating. i don’t know yet if she’s fully recovered. i don’t still know if i had.
it was only then that i realized that i, too, have changed. it was only then that i realized that i had changed because of what happened to her and of what had happened to me. i had made me change and no external force had made me.
i believe that this change was for the better. my depth perception is way off. i am blurry all the time. and i get a lot of praises from my friends. they like my natural “guy-liner.” i get more second looks now. which is a good thing.
i don’t know if i still clearly with this new set of eyes. but i do appreciate what it can do for me. i can clearly see now that things are now really different for me. and that i am okay.
*this was the crappy, made-up title of a book that i’m supposed to write. i put it up in my college yearbook write-up.