Monday, March 07, 2011
About the only time I got out of school early was when Mom picked me up for a dentist or eye doctor appointment.
Unlike visits to the dentist, I loved going to the eye doctor. It was 45 minutes away, and I had Mom all to myself on the drive over. On one end of the small lobby were mirror-lined shelves that displayed eyeglass frames. The woman who worked there was pretty with blond hair, perfectly hot-rolled (this was the mid 80s). Everything gleamed, all chrome and mirror. Those shelves of eyeglasses were so clean and orderly. Picking out frames was my favorite part. That and getting a cool new eyeglass case.
Also at the eye doctor nothing hurt. They looked at my eyes, asked me which lens was clearer (I’m convinced to this day it was the same one they kept showing me over and over) and had me read from a chart. They were nice. They didn’t even crack jokes about how bad my vision was.
None of that gritty mess in my mouth, no scary drill sounds, no discomfort. Loved going to the eye doctor.
So I have to wonder: did they not dilate my eyes then? Was I so enamored at being out of school and in a clean, pretty, pain-free office that it didn’t faze me?
Because I went to the eye doctor a couple of weeks ago for a checkup. I put it off for months and only when I was almost out of contact lens did I schedule the appointment. Because I hate the dilating of the eyes.
When I made the appointment I asked, pretty please, did they have to do that. The receptionist said that if I wanted to have a complete and accurate eye exam, then yes. If you want to chance your eyeball rotting and falling out of your head, then no. She didn’t say that last part but she might as well have.
I was a big girl and went the grown-up route of having the complete eye exam. When I came out of the exam room, I shielded my eyes and ducked my head like the paparazzi were after me. I slipped on sunglasses and opened my eyes just enough to see when we walked outside. Some four hours later, my eyes had returned, pretty much, to normal. Whew. Glad that’s over for another couple of years.
I did get some snazzy new glasses out of the deal, though.