Monday was a banner day. After waiting at a walk-in clinic to learn I can’t hear out of my right ear because “sometimes ears just get that way,” I went to the eye doctor where I learned my eyes are failing rapidly. I’ve worn contact lenses my entire life and apparently that’s not good. Plus, I stare at a screen all day, either writing on my laptop or reading on my Kindle. Even though I’ve dialed up the fonts as large as they’ll go, it’s still a strain on my eyes.
So I’m in glasses while my eyes heal. At night, I wear ointment. Ointment! That’s a sexy word. In a few weeks, we can reassess. I don’t see well in glasses, and my eyes are too dry for laser correction, so I’m not sure where we will land. The problem is mainly with my right eye, so perhaps I can wear a jaunty patch and bring the whole pirate look back. If nothing else, I can rock Halloween.
I hate not being able to see, as reading is my life. Plus I like to go to the gym and eye glasses are a pain during step class.
The only positive thing in all of this is that my Christian Dior cat-eye trifocals cover up my sun damage and the magnification gives me those of-the-moment manga eyes.
Everything has started falling apart and the worst part is whenever I go to the doctor, they tell me this is normal. I’m simply at the age where I need to wear several pairs of reading glasses to read a recipe or help my children with their homework. Often I see women–much older than me–with full-time caregiving responsibilities for their grandkids. How do they do it? The very idea makes me want to take a nap.
I’ve always been OK with aging: It beats the alternative. Somehow I thought this attitude would shelter me from the storm, but as soon as it started messing with my eyesight, aging felt personal. And now, like Dylan Thomas, I, too, rage against the dying of the light.
Lately I’ve been listening to podcasts about aging and have been mainlining evening primrose oil, omega 3s and slathering myself in yam cream. I know it’s important to embrace things with an open heart and to focus on the positive. I’m trying to focus on the good things about aging. Age has taught me how to avoid bad men, terrible fashion trends and that most movies aren’t worth seeing until they end up on Netflix. And thanks to my newly deadened tastebuds, I thoroughly enjoy cruciferous vegetables.
How are you embracing aging? Loving it, tolerating it or putting your head in the sand? Let’s discuss. Just make sure you talk into my good ear.
Just a reminder that we are kicking off the 1010 Park Place book club in November. Our first pick is Holly Robinson’s Folly Cove. Click on the link for more information.