Everyone knows that there are many definitive moments that shape our lives. But what we don’t stop to think about are all the little things, the everyday, ordinary things that we tend not to notice. And in many cases, what is a big moment for one person is only a little moment for another person.
When I was in first grade, a little thing became one of the most definitive things in my life. My teacher wore glasses. Unbeknown to me, these glasses would shape my life in a manner that only another person like myself with an obsession about glasses and vision could begin to understand. The person wearing the glasses was nothing special to look at, just another old maid teacher in her late 30’s or early 40’s. But the glasses fascinated me. The lenses were funny looking; it was almost as if the edges had a Ľ” bevel all around the lens, creating a bit of a circle in the center section where my teacher looked through and they would flash when she moved her head. And behind these very strong lenses, her eyes were clear and defined, but they looked to be very tiny and set back deep in her face. I spent far too much time staring at her glasses.
I was in a 4-room schoolhouse, with 2 grades to every teacher, and those 2 years are but a distant memory to me now. But I do remember in grades 5 and 6 when some of the girls in my class got glasses, I became very interested in these girls. Then when I reached high school, and all the small schools from the surrounding area combined their 9th through 12th grades into the district high school, I had a whole new crop of young ladies wearing glasses to stare at. At the school dances, I would often ask some of these girls who wore glasses to dance with me. I wasn’t a good dancer, so sometimes they accepted, sometimes they didn’t. But, it didn’t stop me from looking.
My mother was a very picky person. She was the local music teacher, and she successfully instructed many children in the art of playing the piano. Unfortunately I showed absolutely no talent, and after 4 or 5 torturous years she finally gave up on me. The only good thing was that often I would find out long before anyone else knew that one of the young ladies that my mom instructed needed glasses. Usually the scenario at the supper table went something like this:
“I told Betty today that she had better tell her mother that she needs her eyes tested. She just can’t see well enough to read the music on the stand, so she will likely have to get glasses. Such a shame, because she is such a pretty girl,” Mother would say.
It didn’t take a whole lot of intelligence for me to realize that to my mother, glasses ruined the looks of a girl. To me glasses were the icing on the cake, but I soon realized that my cake was going to have to remain without icing to gain my mothers approval.
So when I was 20, and had been working as a mechanic in the local garage for almost 2 years, I reached a compromise within myself. Sheila, the girl I had been dating, did need glasses, but hardly anyone knew. Sheila only wore her glasses to see clearly at the movies, or for anything that was way off in the distance. She didn’t even have her driver’s license restricted to the wearing of glasses. So, we were married, and the first time my mom saw Sheila wearing glasses was one evening after dinner at my parent’s house when Sheila got out her glasses when we all watched Ed Sullivan. Mom didn’t say anything other than “Oh, I didn’t know you wore glasses Sheila. That’s too bad.”
I know that it wasn’t the fact that Sheila hardly ever needed her glasses that caused our eventual breakup. We grew apart very quickly, as a result of having married so young. And, when Sheila was caught running around with another man, I didn’t waste any time leaving her.
After my divorce I moved to the city. My small town mechanics wages were very low, and in the city I was able to earn twice as much. Also, there were a lot more girls around wearing glasses.
Lois was the receptionist at the car dealership where I worked, and I was really attracted to her. She wore a pair of nice 60’s style plastic octagonal shaped tortoiseshell frames with what appeared to be a substantial minus prescription, thick enough that the lenses protruded on both sides of her frame. These glasses suited her pert little figure well. She was a perky, bubbly girl, and seemed to take a liking to me. So we dated for a while, and we eventually married.
Then came the life in the suburbs, with the 3 kids, and the dog, and all the resulting trials and tribulations – more little things.
Shortly before the end of the 20th century there were many of the little things that had heaped up end on end. Lois and I were together still, but we were apart. We no longer seemed to have anything in common. Lois had worn contact lenses, against my many protests, for many years. The day finally came when Lois announced that she could no longer wear contacts, as they were bothering her eyes too much. Just as I was about to start cheering with joy, she released the bad news. She was having the new laser surgery. Her doctor had told her she was a perfect candidate. This was a big blow to me. The children had all finished school, and none of them lived at home anymore. I had been looking forward to getting reacquainted with Lois, and I had hopes that as she got older, her glasses would again become part of her wardrobe. But, my hopes were being dashed by the laser surgery.
A couple more years with Lois were all I could take. I wanted to leave the cold and dampness of the Midwest winters, but Lois would have nothing to do with moving away from her children and our grandkids. Finally, one September, with the thoughts of winter already chilling my bones, I told Lois that I was going to move to Las Vegas, with or without her. I quickly became quite self sufficient in my bachelor’s apartment in Vegas, although I didn’t have much furniture.
Mechanics were in short supply there, especially one like me who had worked on everything from cars to massive construction equipment. And, the rate of pay was quite good. The area around Vegas was experiencing a real boom cycle, so there were all types of equipment requiring repairs.
I had lived in the apartment for about 6 months, but I felt a little claustrophobic there. So, I bought a 40-acre piece of land off Blue Diamond Road, and a 5 acre piece a bit further away, but both had frontage on the road to Pahrump. And at the same time, since I wanted a house to live in as well, I bought a new 3-bedroom home in a new subdivision. Since interest rates were very low, I was able to finance these purchases easily.
Before I took possession of my new home I had made over $50,000.00 on paper. And just before I moved in, I had an offer on the 40 acres that put a cool half million in my pocket. So, I sold it and put some of the profit directly into my new house, I avoided paying taxes on a good portion of the money. I was positive I had made the right decision to move here. I was also very fortunate in that my wife filed for divorce before I made this money, so I managed to avoid giving her half of it. I did give her our former home in Illinois, and all the investment money we had saved, so please, don’t feel too sorry for her.
Vegas wasn’t a city where one could find a lot of girls wearing glasses. All the showgirls either wore contacts, or else didn’t need glasses. I had scouted around for a while with no success. Finally I gave up searching, and decided to sit back and see what happened on it’s own. I didn’t have to have a woman around.
Then, along came another little thing that ended up turning into the biggest thing in my life. I began to spend a lot of my time on the Internet. One particular web site had a bit of a chat room, and I spent a lot of time chatting with a young lady from Argentina. This young lady was named Consuelo, whom I called Connie.
Now, I don’t know if you have ever been in a chat room on the Internet. But, if you have, some of the stories are a little far fetched, as are a few of the characters. I was having a hard time believing Connie, and her story. Connie and her 2 sisters were all born near a city called Corrientes, in the Northern pampas, on a river near the border with Paraguay. The family was very poor, and their father was a farmer, who was lucky to be able to grow enough food for his family to survive on. Connie had an older sister called Magdalena, or Magda for short, and a younger sister named Maria. As Connie told it, Magda had problems with her eyes. She couldn’t see anything more than a few inches in front of her nose. The year that Connie turned 11 and Magda was 15, a group of doctors came to their village. These doctors fixed the eyes of some of the older people who were blind, and they tested the eyes of anyone who could not see properly. Magda was found to be extremely nearsighted. But the doctors didn’t have any glasses with them that were strong enough for Magda, so they fitted Magda with a pair of glasses that helped her to see a little bit better. Then after the doctors returned to the US, they sent Magda a package in the mail with a new pair of glasses with a prescription that allowed Magda to see much better.
So far, the story that Connie told wasn’t earth shattering, nor was it unbelievable. I had heard of teams of eye doctors that go into South American countries, and do cataract surgeries and other treatments, and provide glasses when possible. But, when Connie then told me that she took the pair of glasses that they had first given Magda, and started wearing them herself so that she too would have to wear glasses, I became skeptical. Apparently, within a 3-week period, Connie had been able to force her eyes to adapt to these glasses. And, the following year, when the doctors had returned to the village, Magda required stronger glasses. Of course, again they didn’t have any glasses with them that were strong enough. At this time, Connie also had her eyes tested, and she too required stronger glasses. The nurses, who were Catholic Nuns, had a pair of glasses available that was close enough to Connie’s new prescription, so Connie got a new pair of stronger glasses. Connie told me that she wore her new glasses for only a few weeks and when they sent Magda her new pair of glasses through the mail, Connie again started to wear her sister’s old glasses. According to what Connie told me, it took her a bit longer to become accustomed to these glasses. The lenses were very strong and thick, but Connie liked the looks of them so much that she persevered until her eyes accepted the myopia that was being forced upon them. And, of course she didn’t know anything about prescriptions, so she couldn’t tell me what prescription was in these glasses, or even what was in Magda’s newest glasses.
Then when Connie was 15, her father was elected to the government parliament as a representative from their district. Their family moved to Buenos Aires, and had a nice home provided for them. Magda and Connie were also able to have their eyes examined by a local doctor, and both girls got new glasses with their proper prescription. They also discovered a few of the nicer things in life, such as the Internet. This is when I first connected with Connie on an Internet site devoted to vision and other related topics. This site has an active chat room, and after Connie had posted on the regular forum about the fact that she had created much of her own myopia by wearing glasses that were much too strong for her, she ended up on the chat, talking about it. Of course the usual jerks gave her a hard time about her story. I was very skeptical myself, but I at least kept my doubts to myself, and Connie and I began a lengthy series of e-mails.
Now that Connie was in Buenos Aires, at a proper Catholic School, she was doing much better with her studies. She kept telling me that she eventually wanted to come to the United States, and study to become an eye doctor. She was extremely interested in discussing eyes, and related vision problems with me in our various e-mails. Her prescription at this time, which was the first one that she had actually gotten from a proper doctor was OD –12.75 x –0.50 x 128, and OS –12.00 x –1.00 x 155. I still wasn’t sure if I could really believe that Connie was who and what she told me she was, as I know there are a lot of men that hang out on the Internet pretending to be what they are not.
The attachment that came with one of Connie’s e-mails just after her 16th birthday was quite a shock to me. It was a picture of her at her birthday party. And, on close inspection I could see her older sister Magda in the picture as well. At least I figured it was Magda, because the other young lady in the picture wearing glasses was wearing a pair of glasses with myodisc lenses, and Connie had told me that her sister had also gotten new stronger glasses recently. So, now the idea that she was a fake was no longer in my mind.
Just knowing that Connie was real made quite a difference in my e-mails. I was more willing to share some of my personal information, and I felt that I was not completely wasting my time anymore. No, don’t get me wrong. There was no way that I, a 52-year-old man was going to try to seduce a young girl of 16. I just mean that I felt closer to Connie in a fatherly, or maybe a grandfatherly way.
Shortly after Connie turned 17, she had another eye examination. This time her new glasses were OD –14.75 with no cylinder, and OS –13.75 x –0.50 x 155. Both her eyes had gotten a lot more myopic for the spherical portion, although her cylinder had dropped by –0.50D in each eye. Usually the cylinder jumps along with the sphere. Connie described her new glasses as really thick. The lens size was 48mm, the nose was 18mm, and the outer edge of her lenses were 15mm thick at the thickest point. And the side arms wouldn’t fold over the lenses. As she described them to me, her frames were a wire frame, with a mottled blue enamel finish, and a silver bar holding the lens area together over the nose. I would have loved to see these glasses. She also said that she was nearly completely blind without her glasses. Everything was very blurred and she could only barely see the door or window without her glasses and had to wear them all of the time.
Connie was in her last year of what was considered secondary school in Argentina. She had applied to take the required tests for her entrance to a US University, and she was convinced that she would pass. So, I told her that if she passed, and got above a 3.0 grade average, she could come and live with me in Las Vegas for free, and she could go to UNLV for her continuing education. I figured that this was a pretty hollow offer, as I doubted that she was educated well enough to make the grades. Much to my surprise, I was wrong and it looked as though I was going to have a houseguest for the next few years.
Connie arrived in Las Vegas near the end of August. She was a tall, slim, dark complexioned and dark eyed beauty, with a really tight butt, well-endowed breasts, and legs that seemed to go on forever. Her blue framed glasses were every bit as thick as she had described them to me, and I loved the way her eyes looked so minified behind the lenses. At a quick glance, her glasses actually appeared to be safety glasses, with those side-pieces that come back along the side of the face. But a closer look showed that it was actually the lens projecting way behind the edge of the frame. What a package this beauty was. Even with her thick glasses I was sure I was going to have to fight off a lot of young men over the next few years.
Connie knew all about my hobby of collecting glasses, and of me wearing very strong glasses over contacts. Although I had met her at the airport without glasses, she soon asked me why I hadn’t worn one of my pairs of strong minus glasses. I just told her that it hadn’t seemed right at the time. I was pleasantly surprised that Connie spoke very good English. I am only able to speak a few words of Spanish, and when I asked her about her English, she told me that the nuns had taught them English right from the time she first went to school. I want to learn Spanish, so I told Connie this, and she agreed to try to teach me.
We didn’t have too much time before Connie had to register for school. There was a lot to do. I took Connie shopping, and I let her choose the colors, and accessories for her room. And, just for the fun of it, I asked Connie if she felt like setting up an appointment for an eye exam. She thought it would be a good idea, as she was starting at the university, so we made an appointment for the following day. I did ask her if she felt she was seeing all right, and she told me that she thought she was, so I figured the exam wasn’t really necessary. But her present glasses were around nine months old, so it was probably getting close to the right time anyway to have an eye check-up for a highly myopic girl.
It was a bit of a surprise to me, and more of a surprise to Connie when it was discovered that she needed a substantial increase to OD –17.00 and OS –16.50. Her astigmatism had disappeared. This time Connie chose a pair of blue plastic frames, with a type of lens called a blended myodisc. It took almost 3 weeks for the new glasses to arrive, and while I liked them, there was something that wasn’t just right about them. But Connie liked them, and she had no trouble adapting to them.
Everything went well for the first 4 months. I was spending a bit more money on Connie than I probably should have. I bought her some really nice clothes, and a few pairs of new shoes, and other accessories. I even gave her an allowance so that she would have some money of her own. That way she wouldn’t feel like I was controlling her by doling it out as required. On the weekend before Christmas, I woke to a strange feeling. Someone was massaging my private parts. I liked the sensation very much. If this was my Christmas present, Connie was doing one great job. I should have stopped her right there and then, but it felt so good and I was so close, I just couldn’t stop. I felt the release come, and it was a great feeling.
But, this was bad. This was very bad. Here I was living with an 18 year old, and she had just given me an uninvited blowjob. But, who would have believed me if she had yelled rape. I had a long talk with Connie, and I told her that I neither asked for, nor expected any sexual favors from her. I did thank her for her delightful present, but I told her that she could never do it again. She thought I was angry with her, but I finally made her realize that I wasn’t angry, I was merely upset that she would even think that I required any form of payback for my generosity towards her. With this Connie realized that I was serious, and she never attempted to do me any favors like this again.
Connie was doing well in her studies, and she was taking the required courses for her pre optometry schooling. She would have 2 more years of this, and then another 4 years at a school of Optometry. I felt that she should investigate becoming an Ophthalmologist, because they could do surgery, but Connie wanted no part of the surgery. She was a bit squeamish about blood and the thought of cutting into an eye made her feel weak. It seemed like the first year flew by, and then it was summer holidays. Connie returned to Buenos Aires to visit her family, and I was surprised at how lonely I was during the 3 months she was gone. I was very happy when I picked her up at the airport on her return.
Connie had been back for about a week. She was busy getting her wardrobe ready for the following year at University, and she did manage to find time to clean the house completely. I had been a bit lax about my housekeeping while she was gone. While she was working away, I thought I noticed her squinting, so I mentioned that it might be a good idea to have an eye exam before she returned to school. When we tried to contact the doctor who had done the exam the previous year we found that he had retired, and a new doctor had taken his place.
The new doctor was a lot more efficient than his predecessor. The nurse/receptionist took Connie over to the auto-refractor, and had her remove her glasses and look into the machine, while the nurse checked Connie’s old glasses with an automatic lensometer. The auto-refractor provided a printout, and the nurse looked at it, and I heard her mutter something like “wow,” so I knew that the auto-refractor had given Connie a much higher prescription than was in her present glasses. The nurse gave Connie her glasses back, and she came out to sit with me until the doctor was ready for her. The doctor came out of the back room with his other patient, and skillfully turned her over to his nurse to be fitted with new contact lenses. Then the doctor escorted Connie into the examination room. I was a bit surprised when my watch showed that Connie and the doctor had been in the exam room for over a half hour. I had figured 15 minutes tops. But then the doctor came out, and asked me to come back to the examining room with him.
“I graduated as an Optometrist last year, and this young lady seems to be a textbook case of something that they just started teaching us,” Doctor Smith told us.
“What do you mean?” I asked him.
“For years there has been something that mystified the profession. Every once in a while a doctor would come across a patient who became extremely myopic so rapidly that it defied all logic. There have always been kids that we doctors referred to as eating myopia, which meant that they needed –0.50D or –1.00D stronger lenses every year, and were not satisfied unless they were corrected to a full 20/20. But occasionally a doctor would have a patient who would come in obviously needing glasses, and upon examining the patient, the doctor would prescribe what was a pretty strong first prescription – at least a –3D or sometimes as high as a –6D. Then within a year or so this same patient would come back in and their required prescription would have almost doubled. The following year they would need another –3D, and so on, until by the time they had been wearing glasses for around 5 years their prescription could be anywhere from –15D up to –20D. These patients were not just eating myopia they were devouring it. And no one seemed to know the reason why,” Doctor Smith replied.
“So, what are you saying here? Is Connie one of those patients that you say devours myopia?” I asked.
“I suspect that she probably is. Once this phenomena became known and understood we started watching for patients who were given very high first time prescriptions by the auto-refractor. It is easy for a doctor to let the auto-refractor do the work of determining a beginning prescription. Then, using that as a starting point, the doctor can then fine-tune the prescription in a few short minutes. Off goes the patient, prescription in hand, and the doctor is ready for the next patient. But, since we are now starting to look for very high auto-refractor readings, we are starting to get an idea of what is happening. For example, with Connie, the auto-refractor showed that she required a –6D increase over her existing glasses prescription. When I checked her with the phoropter, I discovered that indeed, she could see 20/20 with another –6D, but she could also see the 20/20 line with only another –2D over her old prescription. If I had not checked to see if I could lower her increase, she would have left here with a –23D prescription that she would have gotten used to immediately. Then in another year when it came time for another increase, she might easily have been able to tolerate another –5D or –6D. She would then have been approaching the uncorrectable range of myopia, as once a myope with no other problems but severe myopia reaches around –30D, most of them are no longer correctable to 20/20.” Doctor Smith told us.
“So, when the other doctor used the auto-refractor last year Connie was given a much higher prescription than she should have had. By now though she has grown into it, and as you say she needs even stronger lenses. Is there anything that we can do to slow her progression down Doctor?” I asked.
“Since Connie is a student, she has a lot of reading and close work that she must do. So, I would suggest that when she is doing a lot of near point work, she should use her old glasses – that is the ones she is now wearing. If she wears contact lenses, I definitely would want to see her wear reading glasses over her contacts. And, it certainly wouldn’t hurt for her to get bifocals in her new glasses. And, if you don’t want bifocals Connie, all you have to do is pull your new glasses away from your bridge of your nose a little bit, and this will reduce the power. Also, do not do a lot of prolonged reading. Shift your eyes away from the book that you are reading, and focus on something in the distance every once in a while. And, if you don’t mind, I would like to see you once a month to monitor your progress,” Doctor Smith said.
Connie and I left the doctors office armed with her new prescription. We had first looked at the selection of frames in Doctor Smith’s office, but we couldn’t find anything that suited either of us – not that Connie could have seen anything when she tried a frame without lenses on. Connie had lightened her hair over the summer, and she was now more of a caramel colored blonde. We went to a couple of optical stores without finding what we wanted, and finally in the third store I found exactly the right frame for Connie. The frame was just a little bit darker than her hair. The shape of the lenses intrigued me, as they looked a little bit like the old aviator lens styles from the 70’s, but I suppose a better way to describe it was that it was more like an oval with the one oval end flattened off, and the outside, or temple edge dropped down a little bit more, giving it a very slight resemblance to the aviator frame. The optician could tell that this was going to be a strong prescription just by looking at Connie’s existing blended lenticular myodisc lenses. I wrote a check for almost a grand for the new frames and lenses. I sure hope that the newest technology hi index Seiko lenses were going to be worth it. But, with a prescription of –19D for her right eye, and –18.25 for her left eye, we needed all the help we could get so these glasses wouldn’t look like real coke bottles.
And, when we picked the new glasses up a couple of weeks later, I knew I had spent my money wisely. Yes, looking at her head on still showed the edges of Connie’s face minified and shrunken well inside her lenses. And, when one looked at the glasses at an angle, with the outer edge showing, the power rings were every bit as thick as any other –19D lens was. But most people don’t notice these things. What most people look at is how much of the lens sticks back behind the frame before they consider them coke bottle glasses. And all there was showing was a thin little bit of lens edge. When Connie looked at herself in the mirror she was thrilled. The color accented her face, as well as her hair. This was one drop-dead gorgeous fox.
True to her word, Connie went in to see Doctor Smith every month to have her eyes checked. And, wearing her old glasses for reading, as well as holding things further away from the end of her noise must have helped, because her prescription had not changed for the next nine months. That summer, Connie worked with Doctor Smith, as she was legally allowed to work part time under her student visa, and when school resumed in the fall, she had not required a further increase in her prescription.
Since Connie hadn’t gone home during the summer, her parents and her 2 sisters arranged to spend Christmas in Las Vegas. Connie was thrilled that her family was coming, and I was looking forward to meeting her sisters. I knew that Magda had poor eyesight and required a seriously strong prescription, and I also knew that Maria was now pretty nearsighted as well, with around –12 or –13D.
I have an attached RV garage on my home, and I have a forty-foot 5th wheel camper that sits in there. It is plugged in to my house power, and is also hooked into the sewers, so really it is a self-contained little home. There is a bed area up over the 5th wheel part, and another bedroom at the rear, as well as a fold down bed in the kitchen area. So, Connie and I decided that she and her sisters would use the trailer, and her parents could use Connie’s bedroom. This bedroom is set up with 2 twin beds, one against each wall, with a walkway in the center. But, when the beds were pushed together, and king sheets put on it, it became a king–sized bed. So the day that their flight was to arrive, Connie and I changed the bedroom around.
The only vehicle I have that will seat 6 is my 4-door Dually that I use to haul the 5th wheel around. So, as much as I hated the thoughts of parking it at Mc Carron airport, I had no choice. We were a bit early and we did get parked and inside the airport well before the flight landed. Although her glasses are very strong, Connie’s corrected vision is pretty good. She spotted her family before I did, but of course she knew what they looked like better than I did. I saw Maria first, leading Magda by the hand, each girl carrying a suitcase. Then Juan and Isabella De Santos came behind the girls, with their luggage. They were thrilled to be here, and very happy to see Connie. The conversation, unfortunately for me, was mostly in Spanish. I think I mentioned that I wanted to learn Spanish. Well, I hadn’t, so I was lost. All I could do was look over Connie’s family.
Maria was very similar in stature to Connie, and in looking at the 3 girls with their mom there I could see where they had inherited their looks. Isabella was a bit heavier than her daughters, but she was very attractive. And Juan was a good-looking man as well. Magda’s breasts were more endowed than her mom or either of her sisters. If I had to take a guess, I would bet that Magda had at least a size 48 bra. She was also a bit stockier built than her 2 sisters, but she was not at all fat. She was just a big boned girl. I couldn’t resist thinking that for Magda to do push ups she wouldn’t have too much trouble, as she didn’t have to lift too far to get off the floor.
As we walked to the truck, I grabbed a few quick glances at Magda’s glasses. I could tell that she didn’t see very well, even through the obviously terribly strong prescription. She had a constant squint, and she kept pushing her glasses up close to her eyes, and even then she seemed to be asking Maria all sorts of questions about what was around her. It seemed such a shame to me that one so beautiful should not be able to see better with her glasses. And her coke-bottle glasses screamed out to the world, “look at me, I am blind”. They were the first actual pair of double myodiscs that I had really ever seen on a person. It looked as if the lenses had started out life as a double convex lens, with one side being very highly convex, and the other side being a somewhat lower convex. The lens was likely originally a +16D or better. Then they took and ground what I guessed to be around a –16D prescription with a 35mm circle in the side that was the least convex. And in the side that was the most convex, I ventured a guess that they ground a 30mm circle with anywhere between a –18D and a –22D. Connie must have guessed that I was wondering about Magda’s glasses, because right then she asked her sister what her newest prescription was. Magda pointed to the right lens and told us –36D, and then she moved her finger to the left lens and said –33D. I thought that they appeared at least that strong, maybe even stronger. And, the plastic frames that the lenses were in didn’t do Magda any justice at all. They were shapeless, and colorless.
Christmas was a lot of fun with every one here. It wasn’t easy trying to talk with Juan and Isabella, but they certainly knew and understood more English than I knew Spanish. So we survived. One evening when Juan and I were watching television, he asked me outright if I was sleeping with his daughter.
“No, I am not, nor have I ever. You are her number one father, but I am her number two father. I love Connie as a father loves their child,” I told Juan. I could immediately see the relief in his eyes.
All too soon the 2 weeks were over, and Connie and I were back on our own in the house. Magda and Maria had gone with Connie to see Doctor Smith while they were there. Maria had already learned from Connie what she should do to help prevent her eyesight getting rapidly worse, and she was doing all she could to follow the instructions. And, since Connie had not had an increase in over a year and a bit, I figured that this was working. Doctor Smith confirmed that both Magda, and Maria had the phenomena of having the auto-refractor give them a huge increase, when in actual fact Maria could see 20/20 with her existing glasses. Magda couldn’t get too much better visual acuity than 20/100 with her present glasses, and Doctor Smith wanted Magda to come back for further tests.
Connie and I went to Immigration and Naturalization one day to see what we could do to bring Magda back here for more testing and observations. We found that I could be a financial backer, and that if Doctor Smith was willing to fill out a special form for medical research, Magda could obtain a renewable 6-month visa, with no employment privileges. Big deal, this was basically a visitors visa, but one that could be renewed without Magda leaving the country.
By March, Magda was back in Las Vegas with us. Doctor Smith did a lot of testing and examining of Magda’s eyes, and he brought in a number of his colleagues to see if they could do anything to help Magda’s vision. She definitely needed a stronger prescription, so that is one of the first things they did. Magda now needed –39D in her right eye, and –36D in her left. This time we got a much nicer looking pair of glasses with much smaller frames and lenses. The lab used hi index plastic lenses, and they still had to make them as double myodiscs, but the front curve was much less than previously. I think the front was around –8D, and the balance was in the rear, but since the index was so much higher, the curves were a bit flatter. She still had the 35mm front circle, and the 30mm rear circle. This is important in a double myodisc, because if the circles are the same size the front circle looks larger from the rear, and the wearer has an extra unusable area, whereas if the front circle is larger, then the entire viewing area is usable. The finished lens was still quite thick, even though we had used a lens blank that started life as a plano/plano. We chose a gold oval wire frame, with a bit wider bridge than normal so that the nosepieces could be bent back inside without hitting the lens edge. And the gold frame had a bit of mottled color on the front oval. I thought that the finished product looked wonderful on Magda. She also was delighted with their appearance and that she could see a little better.
One day I got a phone call from my son, Steve. I had not had much contact with my children since Lois and I split. I remembered their birthdays, I remembered Christmas, and I also tried to send each of them an e-mail every once-in-a while. But the 2 girls were very cold towards me, and Steve, I think, was indifferent. Both girls had married, simple weddings with no real ceremony, but I had not been invited. I sent money, and got a thank you back, but…hey, what did I expect. I walked out on their mother. Steve had just left his job, and wanted to come to visit me in Vegas. What could I say other than come on out.
We didn’t want to upset the sleeping arrangements in the house. Both Magda and Connie are essentially blind without their glasses, and they both knew where the bathroom and where all of the furniture was located in the dark, with no glasses. So we set Steve up in the 5th wheel in the RV garage. And, he certainly didn’t mind.
Connie was now 20, and Steve was 26. This was a bit of an age difference, but not a serious problem. From the first minute Steve set eyes on Connie he was in love. And, Steve is a good-looking, tall muscular guy. Connie relished the attention, and Steve was in heaven.
As a father, I could not ask for a better match. However, as an optical obsessive person, I knew Steve didn’t appreciate Connie for her wonderful glasses. So, it was with mixed emotions that I let the two of them fall deeper in love. I knew I should have broken it up when Steve asked me if Connie could wear contact lenses instead of glasses, but I merely told him that she had a problem with dry eyes, and he accepted it. And, I also told him that without glasses her eyesight was very poor, so if he couldn’t accept her as she was, then he should leave now, and not break her heart. So he chose to accept her as she was, with her beautiful glasses, and from that moment on they were inseparable.
Connie and I had placed a calendar on the wall, and we had measured the size of the dates, and compared them to a standard eye chart. We then paced off the proper footage so that in order for Connie to see the date clearly she would have better than 20/30 visual acuity. One morning Steve and I were sitting on the couch, and we watched Connie as she stood at the mark, and looked at the calendar.
“How close would Magda have to get to see that?” Steve asked me.
“Oh, she would probably have to move up another 5 feet.” I replied.
Steve giggled. “What’s so funny?” I asked.
“I was just thinking if she tried to walk up close enough to the wall to see the calendar without her glasses her breasts would hit the wall, and she would bounce back and land on her butt,” Steve said.
The image of that was funny to me too, so we both laughed. Connie heard us, and she thought we were laughing at her. We didn’t want to tell her what we thought was so funny, but she was getting angry, so we had to. Connie saw the humor in it fortunately, and she called to Magda, who came out of the bedroom. First we had Magda stand as close as she needed to so that she could see the dates on the calendar. She had to move about 5 feet closer. Then Connie asked her to remove her glasses and walk up to the wall until she could see the dates without her glasses. Magda handed her glasses to Connie, and she started walking slowly towards the wall. Her breasts touched the wall, and she hunched over to get her face closer to the calendar. As her nose touched the calendar, she was able to just read the numbers. As I watched her do this, I became so horny that I could hardly contain myself. But she didn’t fall on her butt. Connie gave Magda back her glasses, and then she explained what Steve and I had said. Magda got all red in the face, and ran off to their room. She was upset, and I didn’t blame her. Steve and I apologized to her through the closed bedroom door, and Connie suggested that she would get over it. Connie and Steve went off to the trailer together, and left me to face Magda.
I again stood outside the bedroom door and called an apology out to Magda. But she didn’t come out, so I figured she had to stew for a while longer. What was done was done. However, it did upset me that I had made her poor eyesight into a bad joke, because in truth I didn’t feel that way at all. Yes, it was unfortunate that Magda had extremely poor eyesight, but she was a very nice, sweet attractive girl. She had a voluptuous body, beautiful smooth skin and thick black hair and when she had her glasses off, one could see that she had very pretty eyes, even if they were extremely nearsighted. Her eyes were brown, but not as dark as Connie’s and Maria’s. They had a dark ring around the outside with a lighter brown on the inside. Even with as poor corrected vision as she had, she did a wonderful job of keeping house, and cooking for all of us.
We had gotten a letter from the INS, telling Magda that her visa would not be renewed a second time. They felt that a year would be long enough for all the necessary testing. So, in 6 months Magda was going to have to leave. When Steve and Connie came back from the trailer, they sat with me watching the races on TV for a while. The races ended, and Steve asked if he could talk to me.
“Connie and I have been talking Dad, and we have both decided that you should marry Magda, so that we can keep her here in the US, where she can get better care for her eyes.”
“Yeah, right. That is a crazy idea son. Magda is almost 25, and I am 56. I am more than twice her age. It wouldn’t be fair to her,” I told them.
Well, you don’t have to be in love with her, and you don’t have to change how things are, but if Magda marries an American citizen, she will be allowed to stay here. Then after 3 years she can take out citizenship, and then you can get a divorce,” Steve said.
“Don’t you think they are wise to that scam son? Why don’t you and Connie get married and then you can sponsor Magda?” I queried.
“Magda would have to go back home for at least 3 years. And, with her poor eyesight she might not pass the physical. But if she were married to a US citizen who had enough money to support her for the rest of her life, the physical wouldn’t matter,” Steve told me.
“How do you know that?” I asked.
“Connie and I checked into it last week,” Steve answered.
“How do you feel about this Connie?” I asked.
“I think it is a great idea. Magda isn’t going to be able to attract another guy who likes her and her glasses as much as you do, so if you give it a try I bet you two will end up in love,” Connie spoke.
“What about your parents, Connie? What will my 2 daughters think? Steve, you know your sisters will come unglued with me. Magda is 3 years younger than my oldest daughter.” I had more than a few objections.
“Just give it a chance, and see what happens Dad,” Steve said.
“Well, right now Magda is so upset with us that she hasn’t come out of her room all afternoon. Maybe we should cook supper for her tonight. I could probably go along with your scheme, but only if Magda agrees,” I told them.
With my grudging acceptance of their idea, Connie went to the room to talk to Magda, and Steve and I started to prepare dinner. A few minutes later they both came out. I went over to Magda and put my arms around her and gave her a big hug and told her that I was sorry. I was relieved when she hugged me back and I thought she had forgiven me a little. Magda had cried herself to sleep from the looks of her red eyes, and her face. But, I think that she cheered up when Connie told her that I would marry her so that she could stay in the US. We wouldn’t let Magda cook that evening, and Steve and I finished the washing up. Magda and Connie called their parents to tell them what we had decided to do. I spoke to Juan, and I explained to him that I was willing to do this as a marriage of convenience, if that was what Magda wanted. I also told him that I did love Magda, and I would be happy to marry her for real. I think that Magda heard me say that, as she was a lot happier for the rest of the evening.
I went to bed early that evening, leaving the other 3 talking in the living room. I had fallen asleep, but something woke me, and I discovered that I was not alone in my bed.
“If you are going to marry me, we must sleep together,” Magda said softly.
I enjoyed having her in my arms all night. The next morning when I awoke, Magda was lying there without her glasses, and she looked so beautiful I could hardly believe my fortune. She stirred, so I reached over to the night table, got her glasses, and as she slowly woke up, I carefully placed her glasses on her lovely face. She was even more attractive now. We held each other, and we kissed, and touched, but as much as I would have liked to, I was not yet prepared to make love to Magda.
We were married in a very small ceremony at one of the downtown wedding chapels. Steve, of course, was my best man, and Connie was Magda’s maid of honor. It was fast, and efficient. Then, and only then did I allow myself to make love to Magda. The experience was wonderful. It had been some time since I had been with a woman, so I had gotten a prescription from my doctor for the little blue pill, and it worked like a charm, and as I looked into Magda’s blind, beautiful eyes, making love to her seemed very easy and very enjoyable. She tried to see by squinting her eyes and I put her glasses on her and we had another round of fantastic lovemaking.
It took some time to get Magda her immigration clearances, and at one point we were sure that they were going to force her to go back home before they issued her with a new visa to allow her to stay here, while her case was being reviewed. But in the end, everything worked out all right, although I think that the reason they relented was because the little blue pill worked so well that Magda ended up pregnant very shortly after we were married.
Magda was built for childbearing. Her hips were wider than Connie’s, and the delivery of our daughter was very easy for her. Now Steve had a baby sister. I was willing to go for a Spanish name for our daughter, but Magda liked the name Sheila, so our first-born was named Sheila. Even though the name Sheila had bad connotations for me, I went along with Magda’s wishes. Sheila was a happy little girl. She almost never cried, and Magda was an excellent mother. I don’t know if that was the reason, but before Sheila had her first birthday Connie and Steve announced that they were going to get married during the summer. Connie was now 22, and she would be finishing her first 2 years of Optometry School in a few weeks.
It was amazing. Connie had gone for over 4 years without an increase in her prescription. She and Magda both went to Doctor Smith every month, and neither of them had required an increase. The attempt to slow the progression of their progressive myopia seemed to be working. Now Doctor Smith was attempting to document the progression of the three sisters high myopia. Connie and Magda were sitting around discussing this, trying to help him one evening.
“No, that is not true. You told me that you couldn’t see very well, and that is why I gave you my old glasses to try when the Nun’s sent me the first pair that came close to the prescription I needed. Then you told me that you could see very well with them,” Magda said to Connie, who had told Magda that she really hadn’t needed the glasses that Magda had first given her.
“Well, maybe I did need glasses, but I don’t think I needed glasses that were as strong as they were. I just remember that for the first few days that I wore them everything was blurry, and then after a couple of weeks everything became really clear,” Connie replied.
And then the next year when the Nun’s returned with the doctors, they gave you a stronger pair of glasses right then. You had to need them,” Magda continued.
“Probably, but then when they sent you your second pair, I took your old ones right away and I started wearing them. They were way too strong, and it took me almost a month before I could see well through those lenses,” Connie told her.
“Why did you do that?” Magda asked.
“I loved the looks of the thick lenses. They made you special, so I wanted to be special too. I know that the first pair of glasses that I got when we moved to the city was around –13D including the astigmatism, so I think the glasses you needed first were about –10D or –11D. Do you remember the prescription of your first pair that you got in the city?” Connie asked.
“I only remember they were my first myodiscs.” Magda replied.
So, they were likely between –18D and –20D. Now, if we only could figure out the prescription in the other glasses the nun’s gave you,” Connie replied.
“We could have Maria bring all my old pairs with her when they come for your wedding, and they could determine the prescriptions exactly,” Magda said.
“You saved them? Why? I thought we were supposed to give them back so that someone else could use them. I always turn my old glasses in to the collection box,” Connie told her.
With that they called Maria and asked her to bring all of their old glasses that she could find. They also asked her to get her own records from her eye doctor in Argentina, to bring to Doctor Smith. Maria had not worn glasses until they moved to Buenos Aires, so the progression of her myopia was well documented. And, during the conversation, Maria told her sisters that she had been given a slightly stronger prescription. Now she needed –15D for her new glasses.
Maria, Juan and Isabella arrived a week before the wedding, and they were going to stay for a week after. They had all learned more English since I last saw them, but I had to hide my head in shame. So far I had been too busy to have Connie and Magda teach me any Spanish. And Maria had a surprise to tell her sisters. She was engaged. Over the past winter she had been in nurse’s training at one of the hospitals, and she had started going out with an intern, who would be a full-fledged doctor very shortly. And the funny part about it was that her husband to be was from Los Angeles. He would be practicing in Argentina for 2 or 3 more years, and then they would be moving to the US.
Last year Steve and I had looked into building a house on my 5 acres out on Blue Diamond. But, it was too far from the downtown area for Connie and Magda. I think Connie might have been able to get her driver’s license, but Magda could never have passed the eye test, and there was no shopping in the area. On one of our trips out to the 5 acres, I noticed a sign on the property next door that said: 2.5 acres, best offer over $2,500,000. There was a local number on the sign, but I sure wasn’t interested in buying at that ridiculous price. So, I contacted a real estate agent I had used before, and together we decided that if I could get $3 million for my 5 acres, I should get rid of it. Before I knew it, I had the money in my hands. Then we looked around for an area of Vegas where we felt would be convenient for the girls for shopping, and public transit. We found a number of houses, but when I approached the owner of the house next door, no one was willing to sell, even at a ridiculously inflated price. Finally, money talked though, and I was the owner of 2 houses side by side. I had the houses demolished, and I went to the city to have the lots joined. Once that was done I had gotten a permit to build a duplex, with a large RV garage in the center, between the two homes. The houses were ready for occupancy. Over the past couple of weeks before the wedding we had managed to get the girls out furniture shopping as well. The side of the duplex that Magda and I would be living in was going to be furnished mostly from what we were going to move from our present house, but Steve and Connie had to buy all new furniture.
Even using Steve and Connie’s house it was going to be a real logistics problem. So in the end we decided that Juan, Isabella and Maria could stay there. I then rented 3 suites at one of the newer hotels nearby. Lois, and her husband were coming, along with my 2 daughters, and their spouses, and my 3 grandchildren, who I had never seen. Come to think of it, I had never met my daughter’s husbands. Steve had done a wonderful job of paving the way. Everyone was nice. I enjoyed seeing my girls, and meeting their husbands. And one of my granddaughters was only 6 months older than Sheila, so they had a great time playing together.
This was no quickie Vegas wedding chapel marriage. This was a full-blown Catholic Church wedding. And, I must say that it went well. I had been after Connie to get new glasses before the wedding, but she still liked the looks of her caramel colored frames. The only concession she made to me was to really scrub her glasses all around the lenses, and get rid of that crud that builds up. Normally I like to see that on a pair of strong glasses, because it means that the wearer does in fact wear them most of the time. For the wedding pictures though it just wouldn’t look right. Everything went without a hitch.
When it was time for my daughters and my grandchildren to leave, I had a feeling that Dad had sort of been forgiven. Even Lois had been extremely civil to me the past few days. And I must say I liked her new husband. They seemed well suited.
Juan, Isabella and Maria returned home. Connie and Steve set up housekeeping in their side of the duplex, and Magda and I moved into our side. I sold the other house, and was again pleased with my profits.
Shortly after the wedding, Magda announced that she was pregnant again. Then, within a few months Connie became pregnant. Magda and Connie had it all worked out. Magda would have recovered from her pregnancy by the time Connie gave birth, and Magda would look after all 3 children. Both Steve and I were pretty pleased when we found out that the girls were both going to have boys, and we were looking forward to having some more males around.
Magda gave birth to a very healthy 10 lb boy, who we named John David, after her father, and after me. When it came time for Connie to give birth, she had an even bigger boy, almost 11 lbs. Connie and Steve called their boy Jason Steven. The 2 boys were very good babies, and hardly ever caused any trouble for Magda. John was just starting to crawl when Jason was born, so it was a bit hard for Magda to keep him out of trouble, but she managed as well as she could, without neglecting Sheila, who by now was a terrible two.
Magda and Connie still had not had any increases in their prescriptions. It had now been 6 years, almost a record. Maria wasn’t as fortunate. She had climbed up to a –18D prescription, even with all her efforts to not have an increase. Doctor Smith thought that this indicated that her actual level of myopia would end up being in the same range as Connie’s was.
Magda first noticed it in Jason, and then when she started watching John closely, she noticed that the two boys didn’t seem to see very well. So, we took them to see Doctor Smith. It is quite an art to do a proper vision examination on a 6-month old baby, but Doctor Smith managed, and came up with a prescription of –15D for Jason. John was a bit easier to examine, and it was discovered that he needed a prescription of –10D. Both boys appeared to have congenital myopia. It was essential to have this corrected, as a baby develops things like depth perception during their first couple of years. So, both the boys ended up wearing strong glasses at a very early age.
This little problem didn’t deter either Connie or Magda from becoming pregnant again. I worried about fathering another child at my age, but Steve agreed to act as a father to my children if I was no longer around, so I felt better. This time Connie gave birth to a girl a few weeks prior to Magda giving birth to another daughter as well. Allison was Connie and Steve’s choice, so Magda and I chose Melissa, as a companion name for Sheila. Sheila by now was 6 years old, and was quite a help to Magda. I was 62 by this time, and I considered retiring, but Magda didn’t really want me around the house fulltime, so I continued to work a bit longer.
After the girls were born, Jason and John both required stronger prescriptions. Jason had a –2D increase, which put him at –17D. John though had a large increase of –5D, bringing him up to the –15D that Jason had started with. Doctor Smith was quite interested in our family and its high myopia. Steve didn’t wear glasses at all, nor did I. Steve’s mother, Lois, had been a medium myope, and both of his sisters wore glasses in the –8D to –10D range. I was sure that on my mother’s side, one of her aunt’s had been very nearsighted, but I could not even begin to guess what her prescription might have been.
Connie graduated from the School of Optometry with a very high grade, and she joined Doctor Smith in his practice. Shortly after this, Magda was found to require her first increase in 8 years. She now needed –43D for her right lens, and –40D for her left and was legally blind with a corrected visual acuity of 20/200. Maria was now over –20D in both eyes. Connie now had the lowest prescription in her family.
Because of the dates of their birth, John and Jason were going to start kindergarten the same year. And, by this time they both had almost identical prescriptions. John was –22D in both eyes, and Jason was –22.50D. Sheila was in grade 3, and Connie examined her eyes and found that Sheila had exactly the same affinity for stronger prescriptions as Connie and Maria have. Sheila needed –2.50D for her first glasses, but the auto-refractor would have given her almost –7D.
The next five years saw me finally retire. Steve was still working for the same company, and the boss wanted him to come off the equipment, which he loved to operate, and work in the office, but Steve refused. John and Jason had regular increases in their prescriptions, and as they were going into grade 6, they were both considered visually impaired. Neither boy could attain better visual acuity than 20/100, even with the –28D glasses they both wore.
It had been over 15 years ago when I was e-mailing a young lady from the Midwest who had serious problems with her vision. Her whole family had an inherited condition in which the inner lens grew thicker and thicker, to the point where she became legally blind. She had the lenses in her eyes removed, and with glasses she regained most of her vision. Further, since that time her vision had remained stable, and although she required quite strong glasses, with trifocal lenses, her eyesight had been good enough for her to become a pediatric ophthalmologist, and a specialist in high myopia. Over the past few years we had continued our e-mails, and she had been very interested in the myopia that my family had developed. All three of our girls had the same over refraction problem, and while Sheila had the strongest prescription with a –15D in both eyes at 10 years of age, it looked like Allison and Melissa would also have pretty strong prescriptions as well. But, Magda, John, and Jason were the ones with the real problems from their very high myopia.
I wasn’t supposed to know Kathleen Jean’s real name. She had always kept it from me. But, over the years she had been written up in numerous articles in trade magazines, and now she was the head of the Pediatric Ophthalmology Department of the University of Indiana in Bloomington, Indiana. So, it hadn’t been hard to find KJ’s full name and address, and phone number. She had come close to getting married a couple of times over the years, but she had always let her work rule her life. I had chastised her about this more than once, and I do think she felt very close to me. So, I sent her an e-mail, making an inquiry about whether she would exam and evaluate Magda, John, and Jason’s very high myopia.
In this e-mail, I more or less pleaded with her for her help, to aid my son, his cousin, and my wife. I was pleased, but not surprised, when she e mailed me back, and agreed to see the boys and Magda, to see if there was anything that could be done to help them.
Magda, Jason, John and I flew to Indianapolis to meet with Kathleen. She was every bit as beautiful, as I had pictured her in my mind over the past 15 years. She wore a lovely pair of wire framed glasses with thick glass trifocal lenses, and I wished that Magda could have her prescription reduced to allow her to wear such a lovely looking pair of glasses.
After K.J. completed extensive examinations of Magda and the boys, she called us all together for a meeting. K.J. felt that lens implants was the only option that was viable for the boys. So, she made the necessary arrangements to do this surgery on the boys. Jason and John had the new implantable lenses placed in their eyes, and when the operations were over, both boys ended up with excellent vision without glasses. K.J. figured that they would still develop a little more myopia as they got older, but that it would not ever turn into as much of a problem as it had been and could be corrected to give them 20/20 vision.
K.J. said that Magda’s case was more difficult. Magda had been a high myope from birth with continuing increases in her myopia to become an extreme myope. Her myopia was compounded by two factors, very similar to her own high myopia. This was caused by the usual elongation of the eye as Magda grew and by the continual thickening of her lenses in her eyes from birth, giving her the extremely high myopia that she now has. In fact, K.J. was sure that her latest prescription increases were due to additional thickening of the lenses. This probably would continue until Magda would become completely blind. Further, the muscles controlling the focusing of the lenses had become nonfunctional because of the extreme thickness of her lenses. K.J. recommended the removal of the lenses in her eyes; she however, would not recommend intraocular lenses, as they do for cataract patients, because of Magda’s fragile retinas and the weakened condition of the tissues around the lenses due to the thickening. She said that surgeries on the eyes of extremely high myopes such as Magda, can produce retinal detachments and macular degeneration, so they only recommend a minimal amount of surgery. K.J. also said that removing the lenses would reduce Magda’s myopia by about 50% and they could then prescribe trifocal glasses to correct the remaining myopia and give her good functional vision, not perfect, but certainly much better than she had ever had.
So, K.J. removed the lenses in Magda’s eyes and immediately gave her temporary glasses to use while her eyes healed and they could give her a final refraction. When Magda put on her temporary glasses, she was absolutely thrilled at what she could see. She said it was a miracle. Dr. Kathleen said that Magda was like a little girl she had known that was blind until they put glasses on her with −10D lenses and she could see things that she did not know existed. Magda’s final prescription that she got after about a month was OD −20.75D and OS −18.00D with +2.50 and +5.00 adds and no astigmatism in either eye.
So, when the operation was over, Magda ended up requiring glasses that were very similar to K.J.’s. I loved looking at the 2 ladies the day we went to K.J.s office to have Magda fitted with her new glasses. They both wore wire frames, with high index glass trifocals, and I really thought I was seeing double.
Magda regained much of her vision with 20/40 in her left eye and 20/60 in her right eye. She herself felt that she had regained about 20 years of youth, being able to almost see normally, something that she had never experienced before.
Recently a friend of mine commented on how the Internet had destroyed the laid back way of life as we knew it. I told him that it was just the opposite for me and that the Internet enriched my way of life beyond my greatest imagination, however I couldn’t reveal most of my secrets. But, that was really too bad.
Specs4ever, with a special return to editing by Aliena