I started leaving my seat to walk towards the board when I was four. As I grew older, I had to walk further and further. By the time I was eight, I was going all the way to the board.
I can’t remember the times before that — what my sight was like before I became short-sighted. I like to imagine the world looked the way it does as I see it whenever I put on my glasses today — bright and colorful.
“You mean you can’t see that?” people with 20/20 vision ask me sometimes. Then they point to someone standing just a little distance away and ask the stupid question, “Can you see the guy standing over there?”
Of course I can — I’m not blind!
The world through my eyes is different. I squint to make out text not too far away — sometimes I have to close my right eye as my left is slightly better. Because I find it difficult to make out faces from afar, I recognize people by their other features — gait, complexion, figure, voice…even dressing. I make guesses when ordering at Wendy’s or McDonald’s because I can’t read the displays.
It’s not altogether a life of woe. Looking out of the window when driving past accidents, it is indeed a blessing not to be able to make out all the gore. Not joining the peculiar group of guys who peeked up girls’ skirts because I wouldn’t have seen a thing anyway — not unless I brought my face to within 30cm or less of the focus (and perhaps received a couple of slaps for my effort).
My glasses kept getting broken — I got them when I was quite young, and thought I looked ‘cool’ wearing them while playing football. More often than not I was without them while they got fixed, or replaced, and have pretty much gotten used to living without them.
Here’s to the bright, wonderful world I see with my glasses on — and to the many ‘evils’ I’m spared from seeing without them.
I’m still in and out. Work, school, more work. We’ll see what we can do about all that.