If you want a nice image to start your day off, think of a little me with a white collared shirt that was too big, navy blue pants that were rolled at the ankle and little feet kicking the air between the pew and the floor. Most of the time during mass I could be found looking around at the beautiful church I found myself in. The ceilings were terribly high with breath-taking art, and the altar seemed to be too holy for one man to be able to step on. The lights hung from the ceiling with such details around them that I spent much of my time staring at them. One of the things that drew me to them was the fact that when I squinted, the light turned into a small, blurry circle.
In my third grade and very naïve mind, I thought I had figured out where our guardian angels spend their time. They literally lit the way to communion and waited for us to be done with mass. They were allowed to socialize with other angels while we were all congregated in God’s house. I was so sure I had figured it out that I looked for them every mass and smiled when I was so sure they were there. The angels stopped coming when I finally came to the realization that I just have terrible vision.
I wasn’t seeing angels, I was seeing unclear light. My world was blurry until they perched the first pair of glasses on my nose and suddenly the world was clear. The fall leaves weren’t simply a mesh of beautiful color held up with a beautiful blue background, people finally had clear faces and suddenly a lot of things started to make more sense. I was able to read without having the book right near my face and watch television from the couch rather than the floor. Literally, my entire concept of the world changed when I went from having two eyes to four.
The first year or two I had the glasses, I would periodically take them off as I walked down the street in order to see the world blur together again because there was something beautiful about how abstract it was. I liked the mixing of colors to make it look like pastels that ran together by accident. The longer I continued wearing my glasses, the shorter I could go without them before getting a headache. The lure to see the world in a blur fell away the older I got.
Somewhere between high school and sixth grade, I got contacts and never wanted to go back to glasses. When I wore glasses I couldn’t put my head down on my desk when I wasn’t feeling well in school, I couldn’t run cross country in the rain without feeling like I was reenacting a scene from the Titanic, and I didn’t need to be worried about being hit in the face anymore. The contacts made me feel like an adult and that I was ready to be an adult. I still attended church and would find myself looking at the lights that were hanging from the ceiling hoping to once again convince myself that there were angels in there. The older I got, the stupider I felt for doing such a thing.
I broke my six-year-old pair of glasses a few months back and put off ordering new ones because I didn’t want to spend money. My vision had become increasingly worse as I have aged to the ripe old age of 21, and I fear it really will only get worse. I finally ordered glasses over Christmas break and they came in just the other day. I was in the car, coming home from dinner with my friends as it had started to rain. We hopped in the car and I cursed myself for wearing glasses when it was raining because they only got in the way. As I saw the city getting increasingly wetter, I watched the street lights and car lights blur in the water that pooled on the roads. We pulled into the parking garage and for a moment I pulled off my glasses to see the green streetlight blur into a small orb. I smiled to myself, thinking that eight-year-old Megan may be proud of me yet.