Tag Archives: Eyes

Blind Married to the Blind

My husband and I share a history of nearsightedness.

When asked to identify letters on the blackboard, I said, “What letters?”

Steve said, “What blackboard?”

With eyeglasses, though, my physician spouse recognizes germs a mile away. However, he cannot see a kitchen range. Returning from an evening away, I find dishes symmetrically loaded in the dishwasher, kitchen gadgets polished — and spaghetti-encrusted pans on the tomato-y stove.

“Oh … I didn’t see those.”

Neither can he see leftovers unless placed on the fridge’s top shelf. Even if I attached a neon sign to food elsewhere, he’d microwave a frozen dinner or starve.

I, too, have blind spots. I can’t see fissures in his 30-year-old lunch Tupperware® containers. They were guaranteed for life. Therefore, cracks do not exist. Just eat the bologna sandwich, okay?

A friend insisted I replace the blackened wooden spoon my kid lit during a power outage.

I shrugged. “Why? It still works.”

Our challenged vision extends beyond the kitchen. He declares I never notice a sick computer’s symptoms until I bring it, clasping a lily, to him to fix.

He should talk about lilies? In my absence, Hubby doesn’t see thirsty plants, even when they email him photos of Death Valley.

Heaven help our finances if I leave the checkbook in my bag.

Hubby growls, “Which purse?” He wants a GPS reading.

I growl back, “Front closet, second shelf, tan purse with black trim, largest zippered pocket inside—”

“This bag?”

I roll my eyes. “That’s black with tan trim.”

Eventually he locates it. “I still don’t see the checkbook.”

“You’re blind. The checkbook’s in there.”

At the word “there,” his nearsighted eyes widen in terror.

Hubby associates it with minor interstate-related incidents. When he’s driving 70, and I say, “Go there” — to the exit across six lanes of traffic to the station with the cheapest gas or the last of Nevada’s two rest areas, he doesn’t see it.

But he insists I deny the existence of semitrailers.

Ha! As if, with his lousy eyesight, he would know.

Besides, I find denial very comforting.

I admit, though, that though Hubby never sees dirty pans, checkbooks or cheap gas, he can spot labels poking out of my clothes from Chicago.

You would think he’d also mention wrinkles and poundage on my face and frame. But he doesn’t.

I still see the twinkling blue eyes and cute grin of the boy I dated in high school.

Neither of us can read phone books or decipher teeny-tiny scores on TV screens. But when it comes to each other, we have perfect vision.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Are you and your spouse blind?

The Eyes Have It

My stylish glasses worn in fifth grade.

“Rachael needs glasses.”

My mother stared at my teacher. Neither she nor Dad wore glasses. How could their six-year-old mistake “Dick” for “Jane” on the blackboard? But my siblings also misread “Boys” and “Girls” on restroom doors. Mom soon made weekly visits to the grocery and the optometrist’s.

Meanwhile, my husband languished with poor vision longer than his parents realized. They coaxed him to the optometrist’s, promising his bat would connect with the baseball better.

“Ball?” Steve said. “They throw a ball?”

As a Phillips, he probably took good care of his glasses.

My siblings and I, however, used them as fresh opportunities to annoy our parents. We don’t recall the color of brother Ned’s glasses because Mom was always swathing his bent/ fractured/twisted spectacles with new duct tape.

We all discovered innovative ways to lose our glasses. We left them on school lunch trays. Baby brothers flushed them down toilets and dropped them down heating vents. On vacation, Jean left her glasses in Louisville … or Memphis? The wind blew mine from my face as I rode in the back of Dad’s pickup.

My high school singing group, Debuteens. I’m sitting on the front row, far right, sans glasses.

Eventually, I graduated to the ultimate cool: contact lenses. Why I bothered, I don’t know. My bangs reached my nostrils. My own mother had forgotten my eye color. Eyes? What eyes?

I couldn’t wear soft lenses, so I paid hard-earned dollars for pieces of glass I stuck into my eyes like tacks. They worked great — except on sunny, dry days. Or cold, windy days. Or when I opened my eyes.

After several masochistic years, I decided they weren’t worth it. My boyfriend-turned husband didn’t mind my glasses at all. Not surprisingly, we produced three bespectacled children.

Inheriting my fussy corneas, our eldest gave up on contacts, too. Apparently, gentlemen still made passes at lasses in glasses, because her future husband saw past hers. When our family shed spectacles for a swim, though, he discovered we couldn’t tell time on the hotel’s large clock.

“I can almost see numbers,” our daughter said.

“I can make out the hands,” I told him. “Sort of.”

“What clock?” said Hubby and our son in unison.

Brave soul, the boyfriend married into our family anyway.

Eventually, I did the bobble-headed thing while adjusting to new bifocals. Now the media hypes laser surgery for cool Boomers.

I prefer to blow my wad elsewhere. Besides, not-so-great vision can prove positive.

Seeing the blackboard clearly for the first time, my six-year-old self never would have believed it. At this life stage, though, Hubby and I don’t miss seeing gray hairs, wrinkles or love handles.

A little blindness can be a blessing.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Describe your first pair of glasses. Or do you possess perfect vision?