|Image available from AntiqueGraphique on etsy.com|
Summer is time for doctor and dentist visits around these parts. We all needed our eyes checked, but it's a miracle if we can all get appointments at the same time. I managed to get one for me and The Redhead one week and one for Thing 1 and Thing 2 the next.
We haven't had eye exams for years. Aquaman wears contacts, so he goes pretty regularly, but the rest of us haven't had any issues. I've noticed recently that driving at night is more difficult. There's a kind of halo around street lights and signs and I've had more trouble reading things. This immediately reminds me of my mother, who wore glasses to drive at night when I was young. As I got older, she didn't hide the fact that she didn't like to drive at night and she eventually refused to do so unless absolutely necessary. I wonder if I'm headed down that road.
The Redhead and I filled out an ungodly amount of paperwork, had very unflattering pictures taken for the eye doctor's files, and were led into the same exam room together. I went first. The part where they put eye drops in to numb your eyes and then actually touch your eye with some tool is not my favorite. Then they put in more drops so that your pupils dilate. Then it was The Redhead's turn.
He got tested for color blindness, unlike me. Did you know color blindness is typically only found in boys? It's a sex-linked trait on the X chromosome. Boys only get one X, while girls get two - one normal X is enough to counteract the other, so girls don't typically have it. I learned me something new.
The nurse also warned me that boys react much more to the drops than girls do. She said she'd had a boy slide right down the chair away from her, avoiding the drops in his eyes. The Redhead listened to all this with some concern, but then did just fine. Until the drops began to take effect. Then, he acted like he was on drugs.
|Whacked out Redhead.|
|He realized he couldn't read his watch.|
|He couldn't read a text that came in on his phone. The horror.|
|He tried real hard.|
|"Maybe if I put it on the ground I can read it...Nope."|
I'm not sure why this was so hilarious, but it was. I also couldn't read my watch or phone. This altered state - this sense of vision that was not working - made us laugh. We are easily entertained. The best part was the ginormous plastic sunglasses they give you as you leave. The worst part was having the eye doctor explain to me, a 42-year-old woman, why I would benefit from progressive lenses.
"Do you mean, BIFOCALS?" I screeched, disbelieving.
He smiled. This wasn't his first rodeo. "That is what they have been known as in the past, yes," he explained. Oh dear Lord. I'm old. I only heard bits and pieces of what he said after that - something about this being what happens after you turn 40 and "inevitable" this and "part of life" that. He backed off a little, suggesting that perhaps I could get away with only glasses for driving at night and put a hold on the progressive lenses. I clutched my prescription as we left the office, wearing my blocky, disposable sunglasses, like the old lady that I am.
Then we repeated the whole process today with the twins. They grilled The Redhead before we left, making sure there was no pain involved in the ordeal. I had a little fun with this when Thing 2 asked, "What exactly do they do?"
"Before or after they strap you in the chair and slice your eyeballs? What? You only bleed for like four hours!" I said. I am going to hell.
I made them bathe. And put on deodorant. And brush their teeth - "They get very close to your face during the exam. You don't want to kill 'em with your stink," I explained.
And the hilarity began again.
First they made them wear special glasses to test for depth perception.
|Already having fun.|
|"Hooked on Phonics worked for me!"|
Thing 1 could not receive eye drops without opening his mouth. When they asked him to blink, he opened and closed his mouth simultaneously with his eyes. He looked like a fish out of water, gasping.
|Thing 1. Fish out of water.|
Thing 2 made fun of him until his turn came. When they told him to open his eyes wide, he opened his mouth wide, too. "This isn't the dentist," I reminded him.
|Thing 2. Realizing he was just as bad as Thing 1.|
|And then they touch your eyeball.|
This is the closest I ever hope to come to seeing my boys with altered senses. But I must say, they'd probably be real fun at a party.
We were sent on our way with the grandpa sunglasses again. We had planned on running a few errands after the appointment, but I quickly realized I wasn't going to be able to take these grumpy old men anywhere.
|Grumpy old man.|
|"How long do they stay like this?"|
|"Put the damn camera away already!"|
"Dad, since I can't see can you light it for me?"
Oh, Jesus. Let me get the camera.
|Please, no one call CPS.|
|You can do it!|