Thursday, April 5, 2012
He Really Didn't Have a Chance!
I was nine years old when I had to start wearing glasses. I can still remember telling my parents that I was having trouble seeing. They didn't believe me. Another boy in my third grade glass had just recently started wearing glasses and my folks just thought that I was trying to be like him. Turns out I really was blind as a bat and had a bad astigmatism in my right eye. That started a life long dependency on corrective eye wear starting with my first pair of very nerdy thick rimed plastic glasses. I wore these very awful glasses for 5 years before being allowed to start wearing contacts, which I still wear today even after Lasik surgery.
My wife has bad vision. She has also worn contacts most of her life and now ops to wear glasses on most days. She has two or three different designer pair that look really cute on her. Some might even call it sophisticated sexy!
I was hoping that my children would be like their Papa and have perfect vision into their old age. No such luck. My wife noticed it first. She told me that she didn't think Reid could see the clock on the TV. I just blew it off because I had not seen Reid squinting or heard him complain about not being able to see. I first noticed it when baseball season started. My son is not the best baseball player in the league, but he has always been pretty good and has always been able to put the bat on the ball with consistency. He wasn't touching anything. It was like he was swinging right through the baseball. I still did not think about his vision though until I asked him to read the timer on the stove one day last week. He walked all the way around the counter to tell me the time on the ticker. It hit me like a ton of bricks!
I asked his teacher to have the school nurse issue him an eye test. He failed it. We made an appointment. Yesterday I sat in the same doctor's office with my son that I had sat in 30 years previous to get my first set of glasses. The staff was great and got Reid settled into the exam chair. I don't know how the child was walking around without bumping into stuff. He could read the big E and the next line under that. The rest was a guessing game. In other words, if Reid was an old man, he would have qualified for disability and his drivers licence would have been taken away for being legally blind. They started the process of getting his prescription dialed in and Reid starting reading the very small print that even I was having trouble reading. He was amazed at himself. He didn't know he couldn't see.
We were very fortunate that we were able to get his frames and lenses on the same day. Glasses have come a long way in 30 years and Reid was able to pick out a very cool pair of Nike flex frames. After some adjustments, the doctor signed off on a good fit, popped in the lenses and sent us off to see a whole new world.
I can say that I know how my son is feeling today while he is at school. He is excited about the fact that the world is a new place with clear vision, but I'm sure he has taken some teasing from his friends about his new head wear. He told me that he was not going to let it bother him, and for that I was proud of him. I have encouraged him to stay positive and have told him that baseball has to be easier to play when you can actually see the ball. I have also told him that his glasses are very cool compared to the ones that I had to wear when I was his age.
His doctor told us that Reid can start wearing contacts whenever we feel he is ready. We decided to give it a year or so to see how he does and then we will look to make the transition. At least he will not have to wait 5 years like his Dad.
So Reid never really had a chance. Both his mother and I have passed on our terrible vision to our son. The good news however is that he has a cool pair of glasses and contacts will be here before you know it!
Now let's go hit some home runs!!