why is it so hard for us?

Annfelicia’s post about her heart sinking when she heard the news that Franklin needed glasses reminded me so much of my reaction. Even though I’ve had glasses since I was 10, and as an adult, I’ve really embraced how fun it can be to choose glasses, I have to admit to being upset that Zoe needed glasses, though I couldn’t really put my finger on what it was that bothered me. I felt similarly ambivalent once she actually got the glasses and we started trying to get her to wear them. I was really surprised by how unhappy I was about it.

I wrote the following on my other blog the night that she got her glasses:

I’m trying really hard to stay positive about all of this. It helps that there are a lot of cute choices for glasses and that they can make the lenses thin so you don’t get the super magnified eye distortion. I feel shallow for being caught up in Zoe’s appearance in the glasses – especially since I wear glasses and even enjoy shopping for them – so I’m not entirely sure what my problem is. Maybe I’m worried that everyone will focus on the glasses rather than on her, I just don’t know. And part of it (and this is the terribly embarrassing shallow part) is that I had set aside flex money to splurge on a new pair of glasses for myself, and her glasses ate up 2/3 of that money. Of course, if it corrects the crossed eyes and keeps her from needing surgery (the next step if glasses don’t work), then I’m all for it. Maybe once she’s bigger we can shop for frames together.

Gah, what’s wrong with me? I just keep looking at all the pictures we took today of her in her glasses (most of which only show her side or top of her head – she just doesn’t hold still or pose for pictures). It’s like I need to keep looking at them to convince myself that it’s her. Ridiculous. She’s still the same girl. Just with a slightly more bookish air to her.

I wonder what it is that caused this reaction, and whether others have had similar feelings when their child got glasses. For me, it was partly the change in her appearance with glasses, partly the fear that the glasses wouldn’t help, and partly a fear that she would forever be identified as the kid with glasses, but even those reasons just don’t totally explain everything I was feeling.

For what it’s worth, I got over it pretty quickly, and now think she looks adorable in her glasses (see picture below for evidence), and strange without them. She does get a lot of attention because of her glasses, but it’s almost all positive attention, and I’ve learned to have quick answers on hand for questions of how they knew she needed glasses, and how we got her to keep them on. I also ended up still splurging on glasses for myself.

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