The Eyes Have It: The Professor and The Eye Doctor

The Professor's "good" glasses, or what's left of them.

The Professor’s “good” glasses, or what’s left of them.

Recently I was looking at some pictures that my Facebook friends had posted and came across pictures of my cousin’s kids in their brand new glasses.  I turned to The Professor to tell him to come take a look at his cousin’s new glasses.  As I started to open my mouth, I realized that his glasses WERE NOT ON HIS FACE.

“Where are your glasses?” I asked.

“Oh, I must have left them lying in the yard!”  He ran outside to get them.

Why am I not surprised at this?  Four pairs of glasses in two years.  Countless trips to get them fixed.  The expensive pair, snapped in half.  Unrepairable and out of warranty.  The crappy pair, the earpieces superglued and held together with two plastic sleeves, are the ones he has been wearing for the last couple of months.

The original pair of glasses, the ones that broke seventeen times in two months. The ones that are cobbled together that he is wearing now...

The original pair of glasses, the ones that broke seventeen times in two months. The ones that are cobbled together that he is wearing now…

...And the really expensive second pair that were supposedly indestructible.  Guess what, we found out time and time again that they weren't.

…And the really expensive second pair that were supposedly indestructible. Guess what?  We found out time and time again that they weren’t.  Refer to the picture at the top…

This past week we had to take him in for his biannual eye exam.  The minute I announced that he had an appointment coming up he panicked. He was afraid they were going to dilate his eyes.  Just like any time he has a well child checkup-he panics because he’s afraid he might get a shot.  Oh poor kid, he gets it honest.

After this appointment was over I’m convinced that this must be what it’s like to take Sheldon Cooper to the eye doctor, except that my son doesn’t have his degree in Quantum Physics yet.

The second the nurse called him back, he started chattering,proceeding to ask 10,000 questions.  He wanted to know the scientific basis behind every piece of equipment in there. “What’s that called?  What does that do?  How does that work?”  The nurse was a pro, answering his questions all the while keeping her cool, because I’m sure it had to get annoying after a while.

After the nurse left,  he asked for me to get him down the book about the human eye from up on the shelf above the counter. For some reason he loves reading this every time we come so he can learn about eye disorders.  My kid wondering about disorders, imagine that (at least he’s not googling them!  First he asked about cataracts.  He thought he might have them.  Then he saw the page about diabetic retinopathy.  He thought perhaps he had a little of that too.

“No, no.  You don’t have any of those.”  I reassured him.  He handed over the book, not convinced at all.

“So what’s wrong with my eyes?  Why do I have to wear glasses?”

He has had them for this long and he’s just now asking?

“Well, you have two eyes and one of them is stronger than the other.  You have to wear glasses to strengthen your weaker eye.”

“I’d like to read more about that.”  He replied.  He wasn’t buying this.  I was pretty sure at this point that he thinks that we made up the whole glasses thing as another terrible thing that we make him do.  Like shopping at Target.  Terrible, just terrible.

glasses catThen I remembered that when they initially diagnosed him they gave us a pamphlet.  Maybe they still had one.  I went to the pamphlets and found it, the one about strabismus and amblyopia.  “Here, this is information about what you have.”

He grabbed it and read it in complete silence.  Finally after several minutes he says “So which one do I have, the strabismus or the amblyopia?”

“For sure you have the amblyopia.  We’re a little concerned about your left eye not lining up with your right one.”

“What do you MEAN, LINING UP?”  His eyes almost bugged out of his head.

“You know, we can ask the eye doctor when she comes in.”

He’s always had the weak eye, but a few weeks ago I was taking a picture of him and he turned his head, and his left eye moved and kept moving, out of line with the right one.  It was freaky.

I thought I was imagining things, so then I spent the next few days staring at his eyes.  I’m sure he wondered why I kept staring at him.  Something was definitely up there, I even had Evil Genius stare at him.  He confirmed that yes I was indeed seeing his eye move.  That’s when I decided we’d better make an appointment regardless of whether insurance would cover it.  Apparently our new insurance will only cover an appointment once a year unless “medically necessary”.  He has to go twice a year due to his eye issues.

No offense to our eye doctor, but she is not nearly this cute.

No offense to our eye doctor, but she is not nearly this cute.

When the eye doctor came in, the questions resumed.  He even thought that he should inform the doctor how she should do her job.

“How about this eye?  Do this one first.  You should really do this one first.”

The eye doctor replied “You know, I’m the one who went to medical school and am the one with the medical degree.  Why don’t you let ME choose which one I do first.”

We got to the end of the exam and he announced to the eye doctor “My tendons are detaching from my eyeballs and you need to check them out.”

She looked at me, probably wondering what the hell we tell our kid.  “Um, we don’t KNOW any of that, you just read it.”  I was waiting for him to announce he also had cataracts and diabetic retinopathy.  I was also about ready to climb in the drawer I was sitting next to.

I filled her in on what had been happening with his eye (mainly because I hadn’t been able to get a word in edgewise since she came in.)  She looked him all over and of course couldn’t see what I was talking about.  I’m sure she was thinking what a crazy mom this crazy kid had.

Then we were sent on our way, each child with a windup hopping eyeball.  I’m sure that they were relieved to see us go.  On the way out I made sure that he went and told the ladies in the glasses department how grateful he was that they have fixed his glasses all those times.  I’m sure that they are getting REALLY sick of seeing me bringing them mangled glasses.  The good news on this front is that in January the doctor says he probably won’t need glasses anymore!

The eye has it.

The eye has it.

When Warranty Gods Are Smiling

I doubt my guardian angel is like Nicholas Cage, but I had to insert the “City of Angels” referential picture somewhere. Awesome movie that ended oh so very terribly… how many Nicholas Cage references can we have in one blog anyway?

Today I feel as though maybe someone is watching over us.  At least the warranty deities are.  I’m sure the guardian angel is in on it too.

Remember the phone?  I dropped my awesome Galaxy S Cheap yet terrific smartphone in the toilet for a millisecond.  The part you talk into would not function.  I could hear people on the other end but they thought it was a prank call because it was like noone was there on my end.  I could use it on speakerphone, but that’s nearly impossible when you have two kids sitting nearby, trying to see who could make who laugh first by saying different sentences with the word “underwear” over and over.

This wasn’t the first time this quit working.  It also had some other issues that I just ignored.  I finally decided to go over to my cell phone provider to see what they could do for me.  I just neglected to tell them about the toilet part. I mean, there was no visible water damage anywhere.  As it turns out, the phone was still under warranty, so they could fix it and I wouldn’t be charged.  Unless of course they got inside there and found all kinds of water damage.  I decided to take my chances, and off to the shop my phone went.  I was given the option to have an exact duplicate of the phone overnighted to me for $35 that I could use while it was being repaired, or I could take the crappy loaner phone they had.  I opted for the crappy loaner.

Yesterday I went to pick it up.  The guy got everything put back on the phone, and I left, happy as a clam to have my phone back.  It worked better than it ever has.  It wasn’t taking screenshots while it was supposed to be in screen lock mode.  It actually responded when I did stuff.  Maybe they were mean to it at the repair place?  Or maybe it really missed me.

Today as I was sitting in my car, I noticed something.  It’s not the same phone.  I know this because it got flung across the room when I first got it and one of the corners got just slightly banged up.  It wasn’t real noticeable, but it was permanent.  I realized that it was no longer damaged.  That would be because it’s a BRAND NEW PHONE.  They must have just swapped it and called it good.  I am beyond thrilled!  All of the other stuff works on this one.  Wheeee!

Thank you, Samsung.

I really just wanted an excuse to use this picture. It really has nothing whatsoever to do with this post, other than it has phones in it.

Yesterday my son came home with broken glasses.  Keep in mind this used to be an almost weekly occurrence.  These are the good glasses.  The eyeglasses people have already replaced the frames once, deciding that glasses that were supposed to be that sturdy shouldn’t bend or break so easily.  He’s done pretty good since we got them back.  He’s gone several months without incident other than losing a nose pad.

He said he accidentally walked into someone’s football game at recess.  I’m not surprised, I’ve seen him walk into many walls in his lifetime.  Apparently he was tackled when he walked into the game.  The frames were a little bent, and one of the earpieces had snapped off completely.  Someone had done a pretty good job of taping them together for him.  Luckily, we still have the pair of glasses he got originally, the ones that break if you look at them wrong.  I think Medicaid doesn’t take durability into account when deciding which frames kids can have.  Which is weird, come on, kids are really hard on stuff.  And you’d think that they’d realize that when kids like my son have to come in to get them fixed almost weekly.

Today I took the glasses in to eyeglass people.  The lady looked us up and said “Oh boy, it looks like your warranty expired… YESTERDAY!”

Maybe it was the look on my face, or maybe it was the sound my wallet made when it screamed.  She smiled and said, “It’s ok, we can still get them fixed under warranty.”  I thanked her about a billion times.

A good couple of days indeed.  Things fixed for free.  Found lots of bargains at the store.  We have free tickets for the game on Saturday.  Perhaps the garbage disposal will come back to life now?  Maybe there is a way out of this pothole after all.  Just to be safe I won’t hold my breath.

I rather imagine my guardian angel would be more like the Ghost of Christmas Present in Scrooged, except maybe without the toaster. That would explain a lot of my injuries.

The ADD Leading the ADD: Is There Hope for the Future?

You know, this house is full of ADD people.  Many days I really think it’s the proverbial blind leading the blind.  I’m surprised we all get out of bed in the morning and get out of our house with clothes on, let alone function like normal people.

Case in point-lunchboxes.  It’s bad enough that the Professor is severely ADD.  What’s worse is that his Mom is right there with him.  On Friday he came home without his lunchbox.  I did not notice this.  I went all weekend and didn’t notice this.  On Monday we looked at the menu and decided that he would do his one day of hot lunch that day since it was chicken strips.  It was then that he informed me that he never brought his lunchbox home.  We talked about it, and he agreed that he would make sure to bring it home.

That afternoon he comes home and tells me that he still forgot to bring his lunchbox home, as well as his take home folder.  Ok.  Late last night I emailed his teacher and asked her to please remind him to put his lunchbox back in his backpack.  This morning I threw together his lunch in a Target sack-a peanut butter sandwich, raisins, and almonds.  Lunch of champions, I tell ya.  I open up his backpack to stick it in and find HIS LUNCHBOX.  Why did he tell me he forgot it?  And why did I believe him?

After he left I saw I had a new email. It was from his teacher, it said “I put it in his backpack yesterday, did it not come home?”  Ah.  That explained it.  He had no idea it was in there.  I’m sure she told him.  I’m sure he forgot since he didn’t put it in there himself.  I sheepishly fired an email back telling her that I did not physically check it.

This IS the child whose backpack I didn’t check for awhile because we have always had him put anything important in a folder.  After several reminders, he knows to bring us the folder.  And to put his lunchbox on the counter.  One day last year I noticed his backpack was getting pretty bulky.  I opened it and pulled out five sweatshirts.

There are a lot of things that happen that are purely my fault around here, simply for me not thinking to double check on stuff that he does.  One of the jobs we have him do around the house is take the frozen groceries down into the basement and put them in the big freezer.  That’s not complicated.  I assumed that he could do it by himself.  However, one time he left the freezer door standing wide open.  Overnight.  Thank goodness it was pretty much just bread in there.  I don’t know why I’m worried, I think that freezer has a force field around it.  This is the freezer that you bet I’ll climb in if we are ever attacked.  It survived the basement flood.  It floated in several feet of water, and somehow continued to work.

The kid gets it from both sides.  I was diagnosed with ADD in 2003.  My husband has never officially been diagnosed, but he’s a classic case.  Another absent minded professor.  You may recall a previous post where he had every lunch container we owned at work.  He brought home a bag full of them, finally!

I am really dreading The Professor’s eye appointment coming up in a couple of weeks.  He has lazy eye.  He has been wearing glasses for a couple of years to try to correct it, but it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.  That might have something to do with the fact that he was without glasses on and off over this time.  There for a while we were going in to get his glasses fixed almost weekly.  Medicaid doesn’t exactly give you high quality frames.  My mother finally helped us buy a pair that was considered indestructible.  He broke those too.  At one point he had one pair broken and one pair missing a lens.  After a lot of stress, we were finally able to get the one glasses lens replaced and the other pair of glasses replaced entirely thanks to a very understanding lady at the eye place.  She took one look at the good broken glasses and said, “I’m going to replace those for you.  That shouldn’t happen!”  Now he has two pairs of glasses, and the replacement pair has remained intact.  However he looks right over the top of them.  He was also given an eye patch that he was supposed to wear for an hour a day at his last appointment.  That lasted a little while.  Of course now it’s lost somewhere in the house.  It has been for awhile.  I have looked EVERYWHERE.   I kept thinking that I needed to call the eye doctor and get a new one.  And I kept forgetting.  Now it’s been a couple of months and his appointment is coming up.  I am embarrassed to take him and tell the doctor the truth:  That I do not have a brain.

Glasses and our family are not friends.  I have needed glasses since the 4th grade.  I have a slight astigmatism/nearsightedness and basically need them to read stuff far away.  According to the DMV, I don’t even need them.  This is probably a good thing, since I can’t seem to hold on to a pair.  I calculate that I have lost at least five pairs of prescription sunglasses.  I also lost my favorite glasses.  These were a pair of nifty looking plastic frames that I got as a freebie with my expensive transition lens wire frames I got a couple of years ago.  Transitions are great, but not for driving, because they don’t really darken in your car. I have very light eyes, and get headaches when I don’t wear dark sunglasses.  So I also had a pair of prescription sunglasses for driving, which of course I lost.

I currently use a pair of purple plastic sunglasses that cost $5 at Walmart to drive.  And then I just forget to put my glasses on.  And I wonder why I miss stuff.

My wedding ring is also missing.  Again.  It’s in our house somewhere.  Since it is “pokey” (as my daughter would say) I have to take it off when I sleep so I don’t slice my face open when I sleep.  So I’m sure it’s either in my bedroom because it got knocked off the nightstand, or in the living room taken off when I attempted to take a nap.  I sure hope the dog hasn’t eaten it.  He eats dental floss and dryer lint, why not wedding rings too?  I am glad my husband isn’t easily offended.  Of course he can’t talk-he used to work in a factory where if he wore a wedding ring there would be danger of his finger being torn off.  So every day he would put it in his pocket.  And forget about it.  I would wash his pants and it would come flying out of the dryer.  It became the running joke between us for the duration of his time at that job.  If we had money, I’d ask him to buy me a wedding band for our anniversary, that way I wouldn’t take it off.  I want a Lord of the Rings looking wedding band, but I’m afraid of the side effects.

I’m thinking another great invention for ADD people would be things that you just can’t off.  Glasses, wedding rings, etc.  We sure would lose them a lot less.

The Princess may be our very own Obi-Wan Kenobi.  She may very well be our only hope. She seems to have escaped the curse thus far.  She’s pretty on top of things.  I’m not saying she’s not going to have other issues, but at least she may be able to not be distracted by everything she sees.  I hope she doesn’t “develop” it later on.

Sigh… oh to just be able to pass as normal.  It’s never going to happen.  So bear with me.  I really try.  I really will keep trying when I remember to.  Just don’t hate my kid.  It’s not his fault, it’s all mine.  Don’t worry because I worry about it plenty (anxety, remember?)