Many thanks to Cassie for giving us her permission to re-post her lovely story of watching her daughter really see on her first day in glasses. You can read the original, and more of her posts at her blog, Love Me Vegan. – Ann Z
The phone rang at about 1:30 yesterday afternoon. My 16 month old daughter’s glasses were back from the lab and ready to be picked up from our Optometrist’s office. I couldn’t wait any longer than ten minutes before I woke my little Ivy up from her afternoon nap. We were on our way to Ivy experiencing her world in a whole new way. During the drive, I couldn’t help but think of how I was going to react. Would I smile, would I be nervous, would I cry? How would my daughter react? Would she cry, would she try to pull the glasses off, would she be happy? I had no clue. My body was on autopilot as I found myself pulling into a parking spot.
We entered the office and one of the wonderful staff members saw us walk in. She was on the phone with a patient getting insurance information. She waved to me and kindly asked the patient to hold. “Hi, Ivy!” she proclaimed. She finished up with the phone call and then what seemed like the entire staff, minus our optometrist, was waiting to give my daughter her glasses.
The adorable purple plastic frames were handed to me. They felt so small sitting in my hands. I couldn’t help but think of how these tiny glasses were going to do huge things for my sweet little girl. I placed them on her head, then took a half step back and sat on the floor with Ivy to allow her to react.
My body was still next to hers as she began to look around. She studied my face, looked down at my shoes, then hers, looked at the carpet, then at the lights, the staff, and back to my face. My heart began to burst inside as my baby girl was pretty much seeing clearly for the first time. Warm tears flooded my eyes and then rolled down my cheeks. A man in the waiting room began to tear up as well. We take it for granted, but the gift of sight is such a beautiful thing.
After Ivy and I got home, she wanted to look at everything. She got her books out and began to flip through the pages. Being able to see the texture of her “Touch and Feel” books added a whole new element to reading. She could actually see where to touch and didn’t need us to guide her. Watching Ivy pick up and examine her toys was such a joyful experience. The best of all, was how she observed her daddy’s face; that tugged at my heart. I couldn’t be happier that my sweet little girl can now clearly see what is going on around her!
The only thing I worry about with Ivy and her glasses is her self esteem. After much research, we have learned it is best to avoid commenting on the glasses to the child. For example, saying, “You look so cute in your glasses!” sounds really sweet, which I would have thought too, but we have learned, if a child hears that repeatedly, then they may start to believe they are only cute when they wear their glasses. It is best to comment on a specific aspect of the glasses, like if they have a design or a color that helps bring out certain features of the child. And, if you don’t know what to say about the glasses, then just pretend like they are not there and comment on something completely unrelated. Helping Ivy find her own individuality and uniqueness is my husband and I’s goal. We want our little girl to embrace who she is and to be confident in herself. We love our little girl and can’t wait to watch her grow!