Tag Archives: four eyes

The Way I See It

I’ve been having a hard time getting my contacts in and out. My fingers still have a pretty good amount of dexterity, so that I can get an earbud jammed in for dictation, aim a tortilla chip (or 57 tortilla chips) into my mouth, grip my glass of wine and pull it closer to me to drink through the straw, flip the pages of a book that I’m reading to Scarlett.

But the contacts, so small and thin, are presenting real difficulty these days. Rob opens the case and places it in my lap. I use my left middle finger to fish the lens out, and then raise my left hand with my right hand to get close to my eye. Balancing both hands on my right elbow, I pull my eyelid down with my ring finger and try to wedge the contact in. My hands shake, but sometimes it’s easy and happens quickly. Other times I drop the contact again and again, becoming frustrated and wondering why exactly I’m putting myself through this particular ordeal.

There are three choices, as I see it. The first is that I can continue to struggle until I finally just have to ask someone to do this for me. This does not seem smart, but the lazy and tired part of me feels like sticking with the status quo.

The second option is to wear glasses. I have glasses. I got my first pair when I was in third grade, and a boy named Bobby stopped being my boyfriend pretty shortly after, which I do not think was a coincidence. In third grade, having a boyfriend just meant that he walked me home, and sometimes his older brother prank called my house. But not after the glasses. Read More>

More Progression

Nearly four years from the onset of symptoms, my ALS progression continues. It is impossible to ignore. Lifting a fork or a spoon to my mouth is a huge challenge, so much so that I can feel my days of comfortably dining out coming to a halt. Being hungry and struggling to eat is extremely frustrating. Doing it in front of strangers does not add to the fun. I am now a two-handed eater, supporting my right wrist with my left hand, and still spilling often. I swear I used to be a graceful person, but now there’s an earthquake inside of me, shifting and shaking in ways I can’t control.

My fingers feel stronger than my arms in some ways, but then I try to get my contacts out, and it’s basically just an exercise in hope. Hope this works, hope I don’t stab myself in the eye again, hope somebody comes up with something soon to get some strength back in these hands before I have to consider eye surgery on top of everything else.

I’m not opposed to eye surgery. It would certainly make things a lot easier. But maybe I should just wear my glasses. [Immediate flashback to 3rd grade and a giant pair of purple glasses that covered my face. Then braces. My awkward years were extensive. Character building?] Read More>