A New Look for Lucy!

A New Look for Lucy! by carolinearmijo
A New Look for Lucy!, a photo by carolinearmijo on Flickr.

On Friday, we picked up Lucy’s much anticipated new glasses. She had picked them out the week before with much conviction. She wanted a pair of purple Juicy Couture frames with pink on the inside and tiny embossed hearts on the legs.

I told the optician that she really doesn’t have that many purple clothes. He advised me that I should let her pick a pair that she is excited about and then try to reason with her on the next pair or the one after.

Friday morning, we dressed up in pink and purple and Lucy picked out a pair of fancy flats for me. I tried to bide our time all morning until finally there was nothing left to do.

We went to the office even though I knew it was earlier than the shipments arrive. The optician looked at me and said they aren’t here yet. So we went out and sat on some couches in front of the elevator. Within five or ten minutes an older gentleman walked stepped off the elevator and headed to the optical shop. When he came back through, we asked him if he was delivering glasses. He was! Lucy told him what color her glasses were. He was quite pleased as was she. Moments later, our optician popped around the corner with them in his hand.

I took a video hoping it would be a revelatory moment like a toddler receiving a hearing aid for the first time. It was not. She put them on, looked in the mirror and within seconds tried to put them in her pocket on her purple dress.

Lucy is a little bit farsighted and has a significant astigmatism, which is pretty hard to get used to. I know this from experience because I also have one and had vivid memories of getting new glasses as a child. One time, Grandma Merritt took me to pick up a pair and I didn’t want to get on the elevator. The gap between the doors and the car looked wider than my foot. The floor was slanted and I felt like I was in a fun house. Lucy says it looks like she is walking uphill.

The optician told me to use lots of incentives. Lucy has never really been one for incentives. They totally failed when we were getting her eyes checked. The doctor went to get a pack of Skittles, but she still refused to do anything more than watch VeggieTales while he manually refracted her eyes. When she wouldn’t try on the corrected prescription, I told her she couldn’t have the candy. I gave her one piece. I ate one and we left the rest there. She was excited enough about getting new glasses once we left the dark room. This girl loves fashion accessories!

So we are trying to keep them on her as much as possible without arguing. You have to watch because she will sit them on the ground. Like yesterday at the Carolina game or today in the middle of the living room.

Of course, I am watching her take everything in. We went to Jimmy John’s right after picking up the glasses. She spent a lot of time looking out the window through her glasses and over her glasses. Plus at the logo and tag lines on the glass and the men behind the counter. She touched the floor as she walked to the bathroom and rubbed the tile on the walls. I told her that her brain was learning how to use her glasses.

After lunch we went to visit Catherine in Old Salem. For the first time ever, Lucy pointed out the clouds to me. She said one looked like a whale. Another looked like a unicorn. There were so many big fat clouds in the air. She had never mentioned them before.

Yesterday at the football game, she asked me what the popcorn box said. We read it over and over again. We read books all of the time, but that was the first time she had ever asked me to read something to her that was not a book. She has always told us, "I can’t read," which is not unusual for a four-year old. I had no idea that meant "I can’t see the words."

I am so thrilled that we caught this sooner rather than later. As all parents question if they are doing the right thing, I found this report that early detection helps improve vision. Considering I am blind as a bat, I take comfort in this article and hope her vision will improve. Her doctor said sometimes they don’t always offer correction at this age with her prescription, but it can suppress the visual cortex. So I’m glad that he did.

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