I was raised in an area of the city that was a middle class neighborhood. When I was 5 I started kindergarten, and I must have done all right there, because the following year I was in grade 1. And, every year I was promoted to the following grade. During these first few years in school, no one ever left my neighborhood, nor did anyone move in, so by grade 6 I had spent 7 years of my life with the same kids.
During the fall of my grade 6 year something exciting happened. Leslie, Lynn and Shelly got glasses. Of course, when they showed up at school wearing their glasses, everyone wanted to try them on, and everyone made some sort of comment. Carol tried on Leslie’s glasses, and told everyone that she could see really well with them, so it then was no surprise when Carol turned up wearing glasses a few weeks later. The previous year I had been sitting next to Trisha, and I had loaned Trish my notes a few times, because she had told me that she couldn’t see the board from where we sat. I remember watching Trish try on the other 3 girl’s glasses. She put them on, looked around a bit, and then took them off without making any comment. I thought this was strange, as Carol had been very excited when she found that she could see a lot better with glasses.
All the rest of that year Trisha continued borrowing my notes. I was surprised that Trish hadn’t had her eyes tested as the other 4 girls had, but it really didn’t bother me to help Trish out. One day I had said something to Trish to the extent that maybe she should have her eyes checked, and the reaction from her was pretty unfavorable as she as much as told me where to go. So, at the tender age of 13 I realized that this was a subject that was not up for discussion.
During grade 7, grade 8, and grade 9 I supplied Trish with all my notes every day after school, so she could copy them. Trish was a smart girl, and was kind of pretty also, so I didn’t mind spending my time with her. When it came time for our Junior High graduation it just seemed natural that I should ask Trish to go with me, and she accepted. We had a good time that evening, and the following year when we reached Senior High, Trish and I were accepted as a couple.
During our 3 years in Senior High, when Trish and I went out together it was always for dinner, or to a dance. Trish never wanted to go to a movie, nor would she attend any of the sporting events. I knew that it was because she couldn’t see anything, but for the life of me I couldn’t understand why she would put up with stumbling around in a blur without glasses. One part of me wanted to see her stumble and fall, but yet another part of me felt very tender and protective of Trish, with her poor eyesight.
I had been watching Trish in school for a number of years now. Every year she seemed to have to bring her eyes closer and closer to what she was reading. During out last year in high school I figured that Trish was focusing on things at a distance of about 4 or 5 inches. I couldn’t understand why she was so stubborn, and would not have her eyes examined. Don’t ask me why, but just watching her became a very sensual experience for me.
Trish was smart, almost brilliant. She had an aptitude for languages, and by the time we graduated from grade 12 she was fluent in Spanish, Russian, French, Dutch and German. She didn’t want to go any further in school, so she applied for, and was accepted as a translator for a multinational firm.
Trish had been working for the company for about 4 months. We went for dinner one Friday evening after we both finished work. I was an apprentice automotive technician – mechanic for folks from the old school, and I was earning a fairly decent wage. Trish was also very well paid at her job. That evening Trish seemed a bit depressed.
“What’s got you in such a bad mood Trish?” I asked.
“They told me at work today that either I get my eyes checked, and get a pair of glasses, or I am out of a job.” Trish replied.
“Well, it is no big deal to have to wear glasses. I haven’t been able to figure out why you have resisted for so long.” I told her.
“Wearing glasses makes your eyes worse. At least that is what my parents told me.” Trish said.
“Babe, I don’t think your eyes could be any worse. Your eyesight is really crappy.” I replied.
“Will you go to the doctor with me?” Trish asked.
“Of course I will.” I said.
“Will you still like me if I have to wear glasses?” Trish questioned.
“Probably I will like you more, because we can do a lot more things together.” I replied.
“I have an appointment Monday morning at 9:00 am.” Trish replied.
“I can take Monday off. Hey, I have always wondered Trish. Back in grade 6 you tried Leslie, Lynn and Shelly’s glasses when they got glasses, and you never said a thing. You must have been able to see better with them then, but you wouldn’t have your eyes tested. Why not?” I asked.
“When I tried their glasses on they really didn’t help me so I figured that glasses wouldn’t help me.” Trish told me.
What that told me was that when Trish tried on the other girl’s glasses her eyes were already so bad that putting glasses on that were too weak didn’t really help her. And, when we went to the optometrist on Monday, it was rapidly confirmed that Trish had very poor eyesight. The doctor was aghast that someone in this day and age would have gone around half blind as long as Trish had.
The doctor wouldn’t let Trish leave his office without some form of correction. Her glasses were strong enough that the lenses would take around a week to obtain. But Trish had a fairly average eye size, and although her prescription was stronger than the doctor normally would have had the proper contacts in stock for, he had a lady who wore exactly the prescription that Trish required in her contacts, and they always had a new pair in stock for this lady. So, Trish and I sat with the contact lens fitter for an hour or so while she taught Trish how to insert the contacts, and how to clean and disinfect them.
The doctor wanted Trish to book another appointment in 3 months. His reasoning for this was that Trish had been using all of her accommodation to see as much as she possibly could, and he felt that once her eyes relaxed, and got used to wearing a correction, her prescription would probably have to increase a bit. And, since the doctor felt that he would have to increase the prescription, he had convinced Trish and myself to order her glasses with regular lenses, instead of high index. He told us that if her prescription did increase in 90 days, if Trish ordered regular lenses now, he would change her glasses lenses for free if her prescription increased. When he did this, Trish could then order thinner lenses and pay the additional cost.
I had seen the bottles that the contact lenses came in. One eye was –8.50D and the other eye was –8.00D. I figured that that was a pretty strong prescription, but I really wasn’t sure.
When we left the doctor’s office Trish was strangely quiet. I couldn’t figure what was wrong, although I did notice that she was looking around at everything. After a while it hit me. She was seeing everything clearly now for the first time in her life.
“How do your contacts feel Babe?” I asked.
“Tony, they are wonderful. I have been so stupid in refusing to get my eyes tested. I never realized everything that I had been missing.” Trish said with tears in her eyes.
I enjoyed having Trish being able to see properly. Now we were able to attend events that Trish would not have been able to see, such as the stock car races on Saturday night, and a movie every once in a while. And, now Trish was even able to watch television. But she had problems wearing the contacts for a full day, so it was a relief when her new glasses were ready. Now she often wore her contacts to work, and in the evenings she wore her glasses. And, on the days we had something planned for the evening she would reverse this, and wear her contacts in the evening. All the people she worked with had known that Trisha was very myopic, and no one had made any sort of negative comment about her appearance in glasses. They had all told her that she looked good wearing glasses, and that they were glad she had finally realized how badly she needed them.
The first pair of glasses that Trisha had gotten was –9.25D x –0.75 x 165 for her right eye, and was –9.00D x –0.25 x 15 for her left eye. We knew that her glasses were a bit too weak for her before it was time for her 3-month follow up appointment. I now had to help her see the numbers on the cars at the stock car races, as even holding her glasses tightly to the bridge of her nose no longer helped.
The doctor took a lot longer examining Trish this time. When they came out Trisha was holding a new prescription in her hand, and she brought the doctor over to see me.
“I asked the doctor to explain this to you Tony, so that you would understand why I can’t wear contact lenses any more.” Trisha said.
“As I suspected when I first examined Trisha’s eyes, she had been attempting to focus on things she couldn’t possibly see. So this created a lot of eyestrain, and now her eyes have relaxed. This prescription will probably last Trisha for quite a while. I have had to increase both her spherical and her cylinder by a fairly large amount. But what I also found was that now Trisha requires quite a lot of prism correction. Her eyes are not focusing together, but are instead looking away from her focal point. Her new prescription is now –11.00D x –1.75 x 175 for her right eye, and –11.00D x –1.50 x 10 for her left eye. And she requires 5 degrees of base out prism to enable her to focus properly. It is because of the prism that Trisha will no longer be able to wear contact lenses. They can’t put prism in contacts. Would you like me to write a prescription for a pair of glasses with part of the prescription in contact lenses, and part of the prescription in glasses?” asked the doctor.
“I don’t think so. Trisha looks fine wearing glasses. I think I understand from what you are saying that her new glasses will be much thicker, but that won’t matter to me.” I replied.
I did understand exactly what the doctor had explained. When the girls in grade 6 first got glasses I found myself attracted to them. And a lot of my attraction towards Trisha was because I knew how poor her eyesight was. She excited me a lot more now that she actually was wearing glasses. And, I had done quite a bit of research on myopia and myopic progression. So, I was fairly well informed. I didn’t dare tell Trisha that I suspected that her refusal to wear glasses had actually caused her myopia to progress even further than it might otherwise have done. The information that I found had suggested that myopic children often develop higher degrees of myopia if they are under corrected, rather than properly corrected. And the prism probably developed because she could only really see clearly with her eyes a few inches from her face.
I was excited over the prospects of Trisha getting a new pair of glasses. I hoped I would be able to direct the optician in the direction I wanted to go. I knew that in regular plastic a –11.00D prescription would result in a pretty thick lens. And, with another –1.50D of cylinder on a vertical plane, the thickness of Trisha’s lenses would be like a –12.50D lens. When the 5 degrees of base out prism was added, Trisha would have glasses that looked like a –17.50D lens on the outer edge. I knew that any optician worth their pay would not be convinced that a pair of glasses like this would be in Trisha’s best interests. But, maybe, just maybe I could convince them that Trisha should have a cheap pair for backup in case her good glasses were broken.
Three months earlier Trisha had not worn glasses. Sure, she knew her eyesight was terrible, and there was very little she could see clearly. However she managed to stumble around in a myopic fog of denial. Once she placed the first pair of contact lenses on her eyes, and realized what she had been missing, she became extremely dependant on glasses. Now she could see almost nothing without glasses or contacts. Before she could walk through a room and avoid bumping into any furniture. Now she could barely move around without her glasses, and after bruising her legs a few times on furniture she would no longer attempt to move without her glasses on. I suspected that she had been using every ounce of focusing ability that she possessed, but she had now lost some of that ability.
Once the optician and Trisha had settled on a frame that all three of us liked, and after the optician had explained all the lens choices to us, we decided to order a pair of glasses that would be very expensive, and probably quite attractive looking. The lenses had to come from Germany, so the glasses would take between 2 weeks to a month before Trisha had them in her possession. As we were walking out the door I stopped.
“Trisha, you need a cheap pair of glasses just to have around in case you break your good ones.” I said.
“You know Tony, that is probably a good idea.” Trisha said.
We turned back, and after a lot of discussion we ordered a pair of glasses that only cost $79.00. This was just a cheap pair of black oval plastic frames that came from the $59.00 special rack. The extra $20.00 was the $10.00 extra charge for a stronger prescription, and another $10.00 charge for the prism. This pair was going to look very nice on Trisha, and the temples were hinged far enough back that the lens thickness wasn’t going to present a problem.
When the cheap glasses were ready within a week, and Trisha saw how thick they were I thought I might have a problem getting her to wear them until her new glasses were ready. But all she had to do was put them on, and her: “But they are so thick. I can’t wear these out in public,” turned into: “I can’t see well enough with my old glasses to be able to not wear these out in public.” Of course I made sure I told her how pretty she was, and I never once mentioned the thickness of her glasses.
When I saw Trisha wearing the cheap thick black-framed glasses and idea flashed into my mind. I searched the city for another frame that was identical to the black frame that Trisha was wearing. I finally found a small optical store that had 2 of these frames in stock. So, I bought both frames, and I gave the optician a prescription I had prepared myself. My new prescription now read OD –11.50D x –2.00 x 175 with 6 base out prism, and OS –11.50D x –1.75 x 10 with 6 base out prism. I had jumped the sphere a bit, the cylinder a tiny amount, and the prism by a degree. I ordered one pair in a tinted sunglass lens, and the other pair in a clear plastic, identical to the pair that Trisha was presently wearing.
It took almost 6 weeks before the new thin-lensed glasses arrived. They had broken a couple of lenses, one in shipping, and another when they were trying to fit the replacement lens in the frame. Trisha was much happier with her appearance wearing the new glasses, and the black-framed glasses found a home in their case. That is when I switched them for the pair I had made up with the increased prescription.
It took a while before the newness of the good glasses wore off. I made sure I always told Trisha that I liked her appearance when she was wearing the glasses with the black frames, and one night we were playing around on the living room floor. I suggested to Trisha that she should maybe wear her other glasses, because it would be terrible if we broke, or bent her good glasses. So, she put them on. After that it became easier for me to convince Trisha to wear these glasses around the apartment.
It was about 6 months after this that I noticed that Trisha was now always wearing the black-framed glasses every night at home. One night she changed glasses, and I could see her close one eye at a time, and try to focus on the calendar on the wall across the room. Then she switched back to her new glasses, repeated the process, and switched back again, wearing the black-framed glasses for the rest of the evening. I knew what this meant. She could see better with the black framed glasses.
“Is there a problem with your glasses?” I asked the following night when she repeated the process.
“I know these glasses are the same prescription, but I could swear I can see better with the cheap glasses. I can’t see the dates on the calendar with my good glasses, but I can with these.” Trisha replied.
“Well, maybe you should make a doctor’s appointment.” I replied.
“I already did. Can you pick me up after work Friday, and take me to the doctor?” Trisha asked.
I replied that I would be happy to. Now I had to switch the glasses back on Thursday evening after Trisha was in bed, in case she took them to the doctor with her. I did that, and I was glad I had, because she did take both pairs with her. After her appointment the doctor seemed surprised that Trisha had needed a slight increase in only 9 months. Her sphere had gone up another –0.25D more than I had given her when I increased the strength of her black-framed glasses, but the cylinder and the prism was exactly what I had made it.
With some sleight of hand I managed to switch the black-framed glasses for the identical stronger pair before we arrived at the optician’s. We had already decided that Trisha would only have the lenses switched in her good glasses, and she would keep the black frames for her spare pair, since her vision seemed satisfactory while wearing them.
So, again Trisha wore the nice thick pair for the following 2 weeks until her good glasses were ready. I had taken the sunglasses to the same optical store where I had purchased them, and I presented another of my own prescriptions. It had been difficult for me not to add –0.75D to Trisha’s sphere, since she had adapted to that after my last –0.50D bump, but I managed to control myself. Now Trisha’s prescription read: OD –12.25D x –2.00D x 175 with 7 base out prism and OS –12.25 x –1.75 x 10 with 7 base out prism. And when I got the new glasses I could tell that they seemed a bit thicker, but I doubted that Trisha would notice.
This time it took a year before Trisha seemed to notice the difference between glasses. I knew what had been going on. It had likely taken about 9 or 10 months before the increased prescription had forced an increase in Trisha’s real prescription. During this time her eyes had adapted back and forth, to whichever pair of glasses she was wearing. When she mentioned that her vision again seemed better with the black-framed glasses I quizzed her on that perception.
“But those glasses are a lower prescription than your good glasses.” I said.
“I know, but I swear I can see things clearer with them than I can with the new lenses.” Trisha replied.
“That is hard to believe. The only thing I can think of is that your eyes have gone back to the original prescription and the new lenses are a bit too strong.” I replied.
“I guess that is possible. But I probably should go back to the doctor.” Trisha replied.
So, another trip to the doctor was in order. I switched glasses again, and after her visit Trisha was mystified.
“I needed stronger lenses again, not the weaker ones. When the doctor checked my eyes wearing the black glasses I could barely see 20/50. With my newest lenses I could almost see 20/40. And with the new prescription he just gave me I could almost see all of the 20/20 line.” Trisha replied.
“That is weird. But you thought you could see things clearer with the old prescription. I wonder why?” I asked.
This time I wasn’t prepared that Trisha would want to order a new frame for her expensive lenses. But she did. And, I must admit I was going to like the new frame quite a lot. The black glasses almost made it into the donation box at the opticians, and likely would have if the optician hadn’t advised her that she could not have the cheaper lenses put into her old good glasses, because the temples wouldn’t close. Her prescription now was –13.00D for both eyes, with the same cylinder and prism that I had used. So, the expensive pair of glasses hit the donation box, and she wore the black-framed glasses back home. I had again made the switch, and as Trisha looked around at everything I could tell she was having a hard time figuring out why things looked so sharp and crisp through a pair of lenses that were supposed to be quite a bit weaker than she required. I knew my luck was running out. I had one more chance, and I was going to take it.
When the new glasses were ready I found that I really approved of the choice of frames we had made. Trisha looked fantastic wearing them. I almost didn’t go through with my final step of my plan. But, I couldn’t help myself. I took her old pair of glasses in and they put new prescription lenses that I provided the prescription for in them. Now her prescription read OS –13.50D x –2.00 x 170 with 8 base out prism, and OS –13.50D x –1.75 x 10 with 8 base out prism. This time they had to shave quite a bit off the back of the lens to allow the temples to fold, and the glasses almost had a bit of a myodisc appearance.
This time Trisha had been without the black glasses for a couple of weeks while the lenses were being changed. When I brought them home she put them on, and she told me they seemed stronger than her good glasses. Of course I lied, and told her they were exactly the same prescription, so she accepted that.
I wanted Trisha to wear the black frames more around the house, but she seemed more inclined to want to wear her good glasses. I suspect that the myodisc appearance of the black glasses probably put her off more than the fact that they were a tiny bit stronger. So, on one of the rare evenings when Trisha was wearing the black glasses I slid her good glasses out of the case, and removed a screw holding the one lens in place. I dropped the screw back into the case, so that she would think that it had fallen out when she put the glasses into the case. I had not counted on Trisha picking up the case the following morning, and switching glasses as she walked across the tile floor into the kitchen. I had just wanted to see her have to wear her black glasses to work. Really high index glass lenses do not often survive a fall onto a tile floor, and this was indeed the case here. There are a lot of tiny slivers to find when a lens shatters.
This was my golden opportunity. I took the glasses to the optical store I had used for the stronger lenses in the black glasses, and I ordered Trisha a new, stronger pair of the exact same type of lenses that she had just broken. It cost me a few bucks, but when I got the glasses back I was pleased. And, when she got her good glasses back Trisha didn’t notice a thing, except that her vision seemed sharper with them now.
A few weeks later we were spending a lazy Sunday morning in bed. We had made love a couple of times, and I was lying there, up on one elbow admiring Trisha, who had taken off her glasses and was just lying there with her eyes closed. She reached for her glasses and put them on.
“Why haven’t you asked me to marry you Tony? Is it because I am handicapped?” Trisha asked.
With that I looked at her lying there. She looked fantastic. I reached down and pretended I was counting the toes on each foot. Then I started moving my hands up her legs.
“Ten toes, two beautiful shapely legs, a really nice firm butt, and a really trim tummy.” I said. I continued gently caressing her body as my hand came up around her breasts, and I cupped each one with my hand. “ Two absolutely perfect breasts, two shapely arms, with nice hands and long slender fingers that seem all there,” I continued. I traced her lips with my fingers. “An absolutely perfect mouth, with lips that call out kiss me.” And I did just that. Then I felt for her nose, and I ran my finger up it until I came to the bridge of her glasses. I gently removed her glasses. I leaned over and kissed her nose, and then moved up and kissed each eye on her now closed eyelids. “A very shapely nose, and two wonderful eyes, and both ears. What is missing that makes you handicapped?”
“You know. My eyes are so bad and my glasses have to be so strong.” Trisha replied.
“Honey, I knew you had poor eyesight when you were 11 years old. That didn’t prevent me from falling in love with you then, and it certainly doesn’t make any difference to me thirteen years later. I would still love you even if your glasses were twice as strong as they are now. And, if you are willing to marry me, I would love to have you as my wife.” I replied.
Six months later I married my first girlfriend. I was the only guy from grade school that married a girl from the neighborhood.