Tuesday, September 1, 2015


I started wearing glasses when I was in junior high.

Well, actually I didn't.

I got glasses when I was in junior high.  I can't recall what grade, but probably 8th or 9th.  I didn't consistently wear them however, as I my eyes weren't bad enough to require it, and I didn't like wearing them.  Actually, I had a fairly difficult time adjusting to them, so I didn't.

I didn't even wear them when I first started driving, although that restriction was on my license.  But during high school I reached a point where I had to, more or less, although even then I would sometimes omit it, and could get away with that.

I largely did that during basic training at Ft. Sill, as I broke my field Army issue glasses, and was left with only my dress pair, which came off too early. So, unless I absolutely needed them, such as when shooting, I didn't wear them, and that worked fine.

 Me, wearing my GI glasses, at Ft. Sill.  We were apparently shooting on the day this photo was taken, as I'm wearing my glasses, and we're cleaning M16s.

Soon after that, I started wearing glasses full time.  It was irritating, however, in that the only glasses I could find at the time had really big lenses.  They were constantly touching your face in one way or another.

I'm the third in, from the right, here.  It's hard to tell in this photos, but I'm wearing some really large frame glasses.  I didn't like them.

Some of the glasses I had at that time also had "photogrey" lenses. That is, they'd darken in the sun.  I didn't like the idea, but at first the glare of glasses really bothered me.

Right about this time, and that'd be about 1983 or so, I experimented with contact lenses for the second time.  I'd tried it a couple of years earlier as well.  In neither instance did they work out for me.   They bothered my eyes tremendously, so in spite of not liking the glasses, I stuck to them.

Then, just before I went to law school in the Fall of 1987, I found a pair of my father's old frames that he hadn't worn in probably 25 or more years, and decided to give them a try. They were Bausch and Lomb ball grip frames.

Bausch & Lomb ball grip frames.  They're great. This pair of frames is presently at least 60 years old.

For the first time, I had a pair of glasses I really liked. The lenses are small, the frames are light. They temple frames won't come off. They're fantastic.  I've worn them ever since, and used a couple of additional old frames of my father's for an extra set of glasses and a pair of sunglasses.

I kept using these frames when I went to bifocals, as they can grind the now plastic lenses for that.

Well, a couple of years ago my vision deteriorated to where focusing on my computer became a problem.  My vision can be handled by my regular glasses at any other distance, and really isn't changing, except at that odd distance.  So hey had a pair of reading glasses made for me.  I didn't like switching back and forth, however, so I largely didn't wear them.

Up until recently that is.

Recently, I've had no choice, and after an eye examination, I had to have a second pair made, one for work, and one for home.

My reading glasses.

I hate them.

The ones I have at home are on a pair of rimless frames, much like my Bausch & Lombs. The frame is a bit heavier, but they're still not bad.  I thought it would look silly, however, to have a set of reading glasses with temple frames duplicating my regular glasses.

Of course, the new frames have a huge lens, reminding me of why I hated that kind of frame to start with.

I'm not blaming anyone. This is just part of life.  But it's the pits.

It's interesting, however, how many people hardly wear glasses ever.  Contact lenses and surgery have impacted that heavily.  Some people, however, wear them for an affectation.  I've thought about switching to contact lenses myself, but based on my past experiences with them, and the fact that I wear bifocals, I'm disinclined to do that.  Whenever I mention it as a possibility, the family is against it as well as they're used to seeing me with my rimless glasses.

But if I could omit glasses entirely, I would.


Rich said...

I also tried contact lenses at one time and quickly found that the trying to wear contact lenses is much worse than the hassle of wearing glasses.

About ten years ago, my brother was able to get LASIK through his healthcare plan and from what he's told me, the whole procedure worked as advertised. I've been threatening to also get LASIK, but as squeamish as I am about touching my eye to get some contacts out, I'm even more squeamish about having someone cut away at my eyeballs.

Pat, Marcus & Alexis said...

I'm now tempted by the Lasik surgery, but likewise have reservations. A friend of mine who had it speaks highly of it, but he was left with some light sensitivity, which I wouldn't like. It'd be nice not to have to wear glasses, I admit, even though I'm very used to them.

As an outdoorsman, I wonder if you found contact lenses a pain doing outdoor activities. My brothers in law wear them ranching, so I suppose that's not a problem, but it seems like it ought to be. At any rate, as I wear bifoculs, etc., it didn't sound like contact lenses were really much of a realistic option.

Rich said...

It was a long, long time ago when I tried contacts and I didn't have contacts for very long, (it was much closer to days rather than months), but they made my eyes water non-stop, it felt like I always had something in my eye, and it was a knock-down-drag-out fight trying to get them out.

It might have just been me or the frustration of the constant feeling like I was being poked in the eye, but I didn't see how they'd work at all if I was sweating, if there was a lot of dust or dirt blowing in the air, etc.

I can't remember my brother ever saying anything about light sensitivity, but he does wear sunglasses at times, but that's probably a good idea just for general eye health.

Pat, Marcus & Alexis said...

Your experience with contact lenses was about the same as mine. On both occasions that I tried them, I never felt comfortable wearing them. I had a hard time putting them in and taking them out. I always worried about how useful they'd be out in the sticks, which was wear vision counts the most.

I'm so used to glasses now there's probably no point in considering anything else. And my eye doctor told me, the last time I was in, that there's some sort of focus correction in my lenses outside of the simple vision one that contact lenses couldn't really address, minor though it was. So I guess oh well, but the switching back and forth with reading glasses is really annoying.

Part of that may be becuase I eccentrically favor temple frames, which very few people wear. They won't come off accidentally, however, so they're a really good choice for somebody who is outdoors a lot, or on horseback, etc.