Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Esme gets glasses (1)

Esme has gone to school today wearing glasses for the first time. I didn't see that coming - no pun intended. Seriously, Simon or myself never had any trouble with our eyes as children. I now need glasses for reading, computer work and close up stuff - but isn't that normal after turning 40?

We had an inkling after Esme failed the school eye examination. When I asked her about it, she'd said, 'Mummy, some of the letters were teeny weeny, I struggled to see them.' 

Talking it through over breakfast, I'd told her we would need to see an eye doctor. She barely let me finish my sentence: 'Oh good Mummy. I hope that means I need glasses. I would like pink ones with owls on them.' What a girl!

The first time we went to the opticians, she had an issue with the gymnastics kit she was wearing and the shiny leatherette chair. If she wasn't slipping off the seat, then the cyborg head gear was slipping off her. It came as no surprise that the test was inconclusive. 

The second time we went to the opticians, Esme was going to have eye drops in each eye to dilate the pupils and relax the muscles. It prevents the eye moving constantly around - as a 4YO's would- and gives the optometrist the opportunity to check more thoroughly.

Esme was good as gold. She allowed the second eye drop in without argument, even though the first had clearly stung. Oh the lure of a cupcake. Ten minutes later she sat devouring one, sunglasses in situ to prevent any unwanted glare in to her now open and consistently wide pupils. She looked as if she was at a rave and I was tempted for a moment to bust some Bob Builder style, big fish little fish cardboard box moves.

Sponge and sugar icing later, holding on to the seat once more, the verdict was delivered. Esme will need glasses to prevent her straining and to help her eyes develop properly. She is long-sighted. 

Esme grinned from ear to ear and took no time at all in choosing her frames, clearly delighted at the prospect. Meanwhile, my mind was flipping cartwheels...

How could this be? Is it down to her birth and the trauma of the ventouse delivery? Has she suffered with headaches? Would she have been struggling, and (typical Esme) dealing with it quietly, all the time thinking it was normal? Would she always need glasses? Would she be bullied at school as a consequence? That evening, I cried silent tears for all the questions left hanging.

A few days later, lens fitted, we were back at the shop to try them on for size. I smiled at my still very little girl. She smiled right back, her bespectacled beauty now in front of me holding a mirror to see herself wearing them for the first time. Her response to said reflection was equally as gorgeous: Esme carefully placed the mirror down and then actually skipped right through the middle of the shop. (Her skipping has been at that not quite in sync stage forever, but the afternoon's happiness factor seemed to compensate for something, and she skipped perfectly). 

 And the glasses? She didn't want to take them off. Which was probably just as well.