Forgotten Crutches

by Crystal on March 10, 2009

Today I had a bit of an eye opening experience.  Literally.

I lost my glasses.

It doesn’t sound like much, but when I felt them fall and hit my foot, and disappear from sight between the train and the platform, my heart sank.  I was blind again.  I’d been in way too much of a rush when I realised we were at the station I had to change at, there’d been no announcement, and the train could pull out again at any time.  I’d been snoozing, so my glasses were hooked over the handle of my bag.  I jumped up and raced for the door without even thinking of them, trying to get out before the door closed.  Then I felt them drop.

It’s very disempowering to be unable to do things for yourself.  I was having to ask people to help me find them, but they couldn’t be found (there were weeds growing there, so they weren’t going to be easily spotted even after the train disappeared and the stationmaster jumped down to look for me.  I had to swallow hard a couple of times to fight off panic.  Of course, without them, there was going to be nothing I could do at work, either.  Was there even any point in continuing in, I wondered?  My friends pointed out that the train I got off was a slow one, so we would beat it in to Sutherland and could check it there once it pulled in, but they weren’t there.  The stationmaster there was great, and called the first station back up again, so they looked again, but no joy.  Of course, it was peak hour so there wasn’t much time between trains, but still…

…and having cost $500, with the special glass I have to use after my surgery, no, I didn’t have a spare pair.

Luckily I know my way into work blindfolded.  I can honestly say that now!

They were very good about it, and helped me get back home.  Like I said, there’s very little I can do without my specs.  I got asked about how bad it is, and for interests sake I played around with a photo from my last holiday.  VisionOn the right is the normal view.  On the left is what it would have looked like, even standing right next to it, if I’d been there today.

Fortunately the bf had been on night shift, so after he woke in the afternoon he was good enough to take me in to the optometrist.  (He got called my ‘seeing-eye boyfriend’, lucky he’s a good sport.)  I needed my script checked again since it had been a few years, but they squeezed me in and helped me out with some contacts until the new pair arrives.  They were even great helping me pick out the new frames, and are putting the order through as urgent.  I walked out of there able to see again.

I have the funniest feeling I’ll get off the train tomorrow morning, and, having the contacts in, will spot them straight away…

I realised, though, that I really had been taking my sight for granted a bit again.  I thought my scare of 2002, when I had the surgery to get back the vision I’d lost, had taught me to appreciate my vision, but I guess complacency sneaks in when you’re not looking (pardon the pun).  My glasses have been my crutch – and you really really notice how much you rely on something when it gets knocked out from under you.

There’s probably all kinds of things I’m not appreciating right now, because I’ve never faced the prospect of losing them.

Have you ever learnt to appreciate something through nearly losing it?

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