Never too old to stick your fingers in your eyes

file4521238453106It’s only taken me a mere 18 years.

I was too scared before. Bottled it. Like many unconverted I thought the logic, method and execution just not right. And possibly very painful.

I’m referring to contact lens. But have now seen the light – both metaphorically and physically. And it is wondrous.

It didn’t help – and ironically it should have – watching an ex on many occasions unceremoniously shoving his in first thing in the morning, and retrieving them many hours later (in various stages ranging from sober to most definitely not). I was mesmerised by the spectacle (no pun intended) purely because I was utterly certain I could never do that to myself. Respect was where it was due.

When I started wearing reading glasses a decade later, the concept of contacts didn’t cross my mind – even when the lenses got stronger, and I had to wear them for longer.

But I hated wearing glasses. And counting the number of times I’ve had them repaired during the years, I wasn’t particularly good caring for them. How many people do you know can trash ‘unbreakable’ ones? Glasses on display in opticians quaked with fear when I perused them.

The day of reckoning cornered me when a very nice optician at a well-known national pharmacy chain (with a side-line in specs) gaily informed me that my eyes now needed full-time help. “Had I ever considered contacts?” she asked. I could have cried. I think I did.

It took me several months to get the courage. And when I finally did, my first outing wearing them descended into the twilight zone of contact lens horror. Panicking and unable to get them out, I somehow managed to push them both to the back of each eye – or so it seemed. Blinking manically, in floods of tears, poor husband was dispatched to drive me to the nearest outlet of said pharmacy chain where a wonderfully calm optician plied my eyeballs with drops of orange dye to locate the lenses and remove them. No harm done. Yeah, right.

But eighteen months later and here I am, along with more than three million others in the UK, totally converted. I bung them in, and flick them out, with ease. I have an occasional day when I revert to ‘specky four eyes’ but in the main I feel naked without my contacts.

I love the fact I can read clothes tags when out shopping, or cooking instructions on food. Restaurant menus are now a breeze, as are newspapers in waiting rooms.

The only downside – without the glasses acting as a barricade and with my pin perfect sight – I have (in my mind) aged ten years overnight. I hadn’t been able to see the latest assault of wrinkles setting up shop on my face. Yep. I’m so vain. I probably think this blog is about me…

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