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I have horrible eyesight.  In fact, I am legally blind without corrective lenses.  Seriously, on my own I can’t even get close enough to the mirror to put my eye makeup on and actually see what I’m doing, it’s that bad!  (One eye doctor said I had 20/400 vision… when I was in my 20’s and it gets worse every year.)

I received my first pair of glasses at age 10, although I probably could have used them sooner.  When I was a sophomore in high school I was desperate to get contacts so I could wear sunglasses… and when I finally did I instantly fell in love with my “new view”.  No more looking at life through an oval frame and being unable to see anything outside of it.  And sunglasses!  What a “Hallelujah” moment!  I had never been able to wear sunglasses before and now, in the shades of my dreams, I felt  awesome and for the first time in my life maybe even obtained the status of “cool”.  <happy sigh>  Life was good.

Then, about 10-ish years ago somebody came out with the Night and Day contacts.  You can wear them 24/7 for a month and then you’re supposed to throw them away and put a new pair in.  I LOVE these contacts!  I get up in the morning and put a drop of regular ‘ole saline in each eye and I’m good to go for the day.  As time went on (and money was always short) I discovered you could wear each pair for more than one month.  In fact, some of my contacts would last six months or more before my eyes would start to feel irritated.  The last pair of contacts I wore for 15 months straight… yes, I know that’s probably bad for me but I have an eye doctor appointment in less than a week and every doctor I’ve ever had has marveled at how healthy my eyes are, even if they aren’t particularly useful for seeing anything on their own.

In preparation for my next eye appointment I have removed my contacts and started wearing my backup glasses.  I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to go back to the “old”, much more limited way of seeing things.  Once again I can only see what lies within the oval “frame” of my glasses.  Now I know why those huge, giant lenses were so popular back in the 80’s, you could see a whole lot more out of them!  My peripheral vision has literally vanished as I cannot see anything outside the frame of my glasses.  <sigh>  Also, due to the strength of my prescription, things tend to look slightly rounded when I look down – which is particularly annoying when I’m trying to walk down stairs… where exactly are they?  Hopefully I won’t have to put up with these glasses much longer…

Now, to turn the topic slightly to where I’m truly headed – I’m realizing that some people view life through Contacts and some people view life through Glasses.  The Contacts people have peripheral vision and the same view of the world as people who don’t need their vision corrected.  The view of the Glasses people is, by necessity of the glasses, limited, forcing them to view life through a frame outside of which everything is fuzzy, or at least less clear.

The pluses of the Contact People?  They are able to see the bigger picture, all the little details around the edges are more visible and it is easier to consider whether or not they should become bigger details.  The pluses of the Glasses People are that they are more focused on what they do see and everything they focus on they look at intentionally.

Of course they each have negatives too – the Contact People can get distracted by having so much more to look at.  Something will catch your attention “out of the corner of your eye” and you turn your whole body to look at it.  Maybe you didn’t want to look at it and turn away or maybe you did and you continue to gaze upon it until you are satisfied.  Regardless, your focus was interrupted.  The Glasses People can only see what is within the frame of their glasses and miss things that might turn out to be important.

So which one am I and what is better, to be a Contact Person or a Glasses Person?  I’m not sure and I don’t know.  The obvious answer to which is better seems to be Contacts – to see everything.  But should everything be seen?  Is a focused, narrow vision better?  When I first started writing this I would have told you being a Contact Person was good and being a Glasses person is to be an old fuddy-duddy but it’s been five months since I started this post, I’ve had my eye exam (eyes are still healthy, yay! but my prescription changed again, boo!) and so much has changed in the last six months that I’m just not sure I want to see “everything” anymore, I think I want more focus in my life…

I guess I would have to say since God created people to see without glasses it appears to me that having a Contact view of life is how we are designed to function.  Of course, that’s only when we’re young – as we age most people require glasses for one reason or another.  So maybe we need both types of people.  Maybe the young, who can see more, are supposed to help the ones whose vision has gone fuzzy, to explain to those who can’t see what is out there and find a way to bring the picture into focus for others.

In the meantime, I’m realizing that the Glasses People are such by either choice or necessity and the Contact People need to be compassionate when they point out the facts and details that a Glasses Person either can’t or won’t see.  And the Glasses People need to accept the fact that they do have fuzzy vision and be gracious about receiving assistance from those who can see the big picture.  We need to love each other enough to “bear one another’s burdens”, to practice random acts of kindness and to be selfless enough to honor others by caring more about meeting the needs of another than your own.

And there I am, in a completely different place than when I started this post but I think where I am now is better than where I was.  Life is good and getting better!

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