Friday, October 03, 2008

Spectacles of Life

All my life, I've been insecure about my glasses. Growing up, that was the only thing I got teased about. Well that and that my mother was white (which isn't true....but that was the harshest insult when you grow up in the hood. but I digress. LOL) When I finally was grown enough in my mom's eyes (ahem 16), all I wanted were contact lenses. Since my 16th birthday brought the contact lens fairy, I haven't looked back with four eyes, only 2. The more I wore contacts and looked at the wack ass pictures of yesteryear, the more I was determined to portray this image of me without the spectacles. The few times I've worn glasses in public, I feel like a completely different person. More wall flower, less social butterfly. Dare I say shy even? It was like some old Clark Kent alter-ego thing going on. With contact lenses, I actually am the free spirit I think I am. But with glasses, I'm always thinking, always pensive, definitely insecure. I didn't like this person. So I vowed that life with contact lenses was the only way to live. Boyfriends would never see me in glasses. Naive me never trusted the notion that if he's with me, flaws and all, it shouldn't really matter. Four eyes or 2. Sure I was more likely to be called a bitch by my teasers and tormentors, but that's because the haters didn't have the glasses to diss me on. I removed their only weapon of mass destruction. I did what Bush couldn't do in the past 7 years. Identified the problem. Eradicated said problem. Problem solved? Nope. Damn.

"Fugly four eyes"

I went to the eye doctor about 2 weeks ago. My left eye was red. All day. I thought it was from the emotional outburst due to my mother's hospital stay but ummm wouldn't both eyes be red?? So off to Lenscrafters I went. The eye doctor (who reminds me of a cross between Mr. Rogers from Mr. Rogers neighborhood and Al Gore. go figure) informed me that I would have to lay off the contacts for a while. He wouldn't even write a prescription for a new set until I come back to see him in a few weeks. Without contact lenses (or glasses for that matter), I am blind. I've been wearing glasses since I was 7 freaking years old. So what's a girl to do???? Well, I went out into the Lenscrafter showroom and picked out a new pair of spectacles. Thankfully, the selections are waaaaay better than they were in oh lets say 1989 when I wore something that looked like this. I picked out a pair and waited the pre-requisite hour in Lenscrafters (really, where else was I going to go without glasses or contacts in midtown Manhattan on a sunny Saturday afternoon??LOL)

"Are those glasses or coke bottles?"

When I put the glasses on, everyone in Lenscrafters raved about how nice they looked. Of course, you'll say that. I just dropped a few hundred dollars up in here. I just paid you to say that. I looked in the mirror and all I saw looking back at me was "NERD" and I'm not talking about Pharell either. LOL I felt the insecurities creeping back into my psyche like an old blanket - a little scratchy but familiar. Oh man, what the hell am I gonna do?? Going blind is not an option and I was determined to follow Mr. RogersGore's orders to the letter. So I stepped out of Lenscrafters and into the hustle and bustle of the streets. I decided to walk to the hospital to visit my mother. For one, to get used to actually wearing glasses again and to give my eyes a moment to adjust. And secondly, I wasn't trying to fall into the train tracks while I adjusted to this new (again) way of seeing. The entire walk I looked down, as if that would somehow make and the specs invisible.

I arrived at the hospital and my mother grinned. With a "ohhhh look at my baby", she commented "how lovely" I looked. I told her she had to say that. She's my mother, after all. When's the last time you heard a mother say "Holy shit. My child, you are sooooo funny looking." She tried to reassure me they look nice. I wasn't quite convinced. I mean they're cool specs but on me??? I'm not so sure. At work on Monday, my boss told me my glasses look "smashing". But he's British. (Yeah that's the reason I gave myself - whatever that means. LOL). Even Rufus Leroy commented on them. He said I looked like a teacher he once had. Now considering Rufus probably went to school in nineteen sixty-something, that meant I looked like some old white lady. Thanks, Rufus. But beyond that, nothing. Men weren't checking me out. Or maybe my peripheral vision isn't has sharp and I miss the side glances. I was cloaked in my visual insecurities.

After a few days, I got used to them. Sure, I can't wear my celebritious Marc Jacobs sunglasses. And its still taking some getting used to not seeing the tv when I wake up in the morning. (yes, I slept in my contacts. primarily for that reason. I want to see from the very moment I wake up in the morning. I know. I got issues. LOL). The more I got used to them, the more confident I felt. Eventually, my head was back up, front and center for all to see. Dare I say I even strutted a little?? And wouldn't you know it, the men started paying attention. I realize how extremely vain and shallow this sounds. But this is me. I'll never be perfect. I can admit sometimes a man's raised eyebrow like "wow" makes my day. Is there anything wrong with that??? No for real, that's not a rhetorical question.

The true test? Hustle. He's been dying to see me in my glasses, ever since he found out I wore them. We dated for months before he even knew I had visual acuity issues. He would ask to see me in my glasses and I would look at him like he was nuts. Why would I want you to see the less than perfect version of me???? He would respond with some snarky comment about the way I look when I wake up, so what difference does it make. LOL So now its time to put the theory to the test. I assumed he would crack up laughing when he finally saw me and my specs, thus confirming my childhood fears.

"Guys don't make passes at girls who wear glasses."

As I got in the car, he glanced over. With a "ohhh shit", he grinned. "It's about time you wear your damn glasses. You look sophisticated. I like. Alot." Wait, did I just see a raised eyebrow??? Ohhhh shit is right, I thought as I buckled my seat belt.

I'm not saying I'm completely over the spectacle of my spectacles. But I'm learning to appreciate me, flaws and all. Whether its with four eyes or two or back to four again, I'm still me. After all these years, I can finally see that.

(Oh if anyone's interested, here are my new glasses.)


rashad said...

Glasses, like pushup bras, high heels and thongs, can increase the sex appeal of a woman.

keisha said...

I love them! Put up a pic with you wearing them, silly lady. That damn Rufus Leroy, screw him. Go Hustle, go! That brotha ain't crazy, he knows what he has in you no matter how many eyes you have! But I do understand how you feel about the sexy specs...

Miss BB is... said...

Girl, I LOVE my glasses! I've been wearing them since I was about 7 as well and my how the styles have changed! I almost can't even imagine myself with out because...hell, I'm cute even with them!!

You know you're addicted to your specs when you real bougie about the brand and style. I take GREAT pride in rocking the right frames. I've never even worn contacts.


JazzBrew said...

As a former four eyes I can identify with everything you said. I've worn glasses since I was six years old and I sported the thick black indestructable joints. I was instantly transformed from little Michael Jackson (don't laugh at my sweater) to Urkel.

I did the contact lens thing but had laser surgery two years ago. Best thing I've ever done. Still, the glasses fit the whole "jazz" thing like a glove and I miss them. I used to adjust them when I was in deep thought and I can't count the number of time my hand goes up to my face to touch what is no longer there.

Hot specs. Would be nice to see you in them.

makeba said...

The specs are nice! Wow totally different from the ones from our elementary years. Great conversation piece aren't they. Bet you didn't realize how much a good set of frames enhance what's already there! Sport them specs girl, strut your stuff and lift that head up. No need to tell you that now since Hustle a okayed them! *wink*

MackDiva said...

Those glasses really are cute. Of course, my experience has been different. I've always had 20/20 vision, and I always wanted to wear glasses. I've owned every kind of fashion glasses know unto man. However, when the doctor told me I HAD to wear them two years ago because my eyes were bad, I freaked out. Spent WAY too much money, and I can't remember the last time I wore them. I like the look, but not the necessity.

£ said...

glasses are hot. your glasses rock.
i have some that i wear just to appear more bookish(i don't really need them). It may water down my sex appeal, but funk that. i think i make a hot school marm.