Sunday, March 31, 2013

Squint


There are two "coming of age" events that I have dreaded and frankly, worked very hard to ignore, prolong, and just plan push off into the distant future-- very distant future.  But alas the day of reckoning has smack me up side the head and I can no longer hide from the inevitable.

For the first time ever, no matter how much I focused-- or tried to,  I could no longer squint my way through Costco--  Faking it wasn't an option and I finally had to wear my distance glasses to grocery shop so I could read the aisle markers and make out what was on the upper shelves.

Insert big sigh of disappointment.

Make no mistake, I fully admit this is ridiculous and vanity-filled, but I am crushed.  It was bad enough that I needed my reading glasses to see labels and price tags, but now distance glasses to grocery shop.  Egad!  That's two pairs of glasses to accomplish one job-- Seeing.

Yes, I've been wearing distance glasses for over a year to drive but those times I've mostly been alone and less self conscious of how they magnify the wrinkles under my eyes.  Now that distance glasses are needed in broad daylight-- in public-- all the time-- means bifocals are in my future.  And bifocals, like the word "retire" sound so stinking old that I'm all in a dither and feeling very sorry for myself.

For the record, again-- I know this is ridiculous but I'm thinking of wearing black and going into mourning.  But first let me say-- There's more...

A few months ago, shortly after our home was burglarized, wiry, uncontrollable, and less than youthful gray hairs started sprouting straight up from the top of my head.  I was shocked.  Prior to this revelation, I knew with absolute certainty that I only had 17 grays scattered around my head, and I know that because I counted them on a regular basis-- wearing my reading glasses and using a 10x magnifying mirror and shining a super-sized flashlight at my head.

I'm blaming the new gray hairs on the shock of having people loot our home and rustle through my underwear drawer because it all happened around the same time and to be honest, I was stressed out beyond words about being robbed. 

When I whined about the grays, my husband poo-poo'd them and pointed out a few more, then practically ran from the room so as not to hear my shrieking in horror and flat out foul-mouthed bitching as I realized counting them all was no longer an option-- There are far too many!

I had actually been pretty proud of the fact that at nearly 55 years old I was saving a bundle of money by not coloring my hair yet.  Superficial?  Of course, but a point of pride that I held onto as one last morsel of my youth.

So here I sit-- Gray hairs growing wildly out of control, reading glasses perched on my face, distance glasses propped on my head, and distance sunglasses still hooked in the collar of my tee shirt from my earlier drive home-- in tears by the way, from Costco-- all totaling a significant amount of money and taking up a great deal of space on my person not to mention three cases to hold them overflowing in my handbag.

I am not a happy girl.

But I do have an appointment on the calendar to start the color process of my hair and one with the eye doctor to increase my eye glass prescriptions before I invest in new ones to minimize the number of glasses I need to wear all the stinking time and carry around with me.  No, contact lenses aren't an option for me but new specs, with a stronger prescription, are mandatory or I'll be bumping into walls sooner than later.

In the meantime, you'll be able to easily spot me in the grocery store.  I'll be the one wearing black from head to toe, a ski cap, and carrying a magnifying glass so I can tell the difference between Costco's mega rolls of paper towels and  baby diapers-- the later of which I need about as much as I need these gray hairs.

Pity party over.  Thanks for listening.

Welcome to www.TheFiftyFactor.com  -  Joanna Jenkins
Photo credit: © viperagp - Fotolia.com

33 comments:

  1. That's okay, JJ. You are entitled to it. I have to admit that I have been plucking mine but in doing that, I am thinning out the hair that I need. Growing old is a blessing and a tough thing, all at once. Hang in there.

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  2. I was in my forties when the far sighted thing started happening. I was always near sighted so that issue just complicated things.

    As for the grey, I'm in your boat. Mid fifties and they're not quite as easy to count any more.. but I'm leaving them be. At least for now. I've never coloured my hair and don't really want to start quite yet. I just figure we're lucky. I know many women who have been covering the grey since their 40s and even a few since 30 something.

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  3. I've worn glasses almost my whole life. I tried contacts for a few years but discovered the flatness of my eyes make them difficult to put in and remove. As the aging thing hit my eyes the strange thing was I didn't need them for reading. I still have bifocals (no lines anymore but you probably knew that) but typically take my glasses off to read or write my blog. Oh I've had some white hair since I was 30+ and now 60 I'm getting close to all white.

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  4. And this is so why I love to read age appropriate blogs - because it is only the bloggers our own age who we can nod our heads with every word read.

    You already know I have been colouring my hair for years so now I am left wondering at what age should I just let the greys win out. So now I have decided to go grey when I am a grandmother. I will be waiting a long while I figure. However, congratulations on having some great genes that saved you loads in visits to the hairdressers. That is to be celebrated.

    As for the squinting, I always was short sighted (distance vision) so had to wear glasses which I hated. Then, when I was about 39 I had laser eye surgery. Simply wonderful. And all these years later I have never had a problem with my eyesight. Well until now. I think the short sightedness and the long sightedness that comes from aging are causing me some major problems which I have chosen pretty much to ignore.

    However, it is getting embarrassing simply because I have to be up close to people to recognise them these days. And worse, all my squinting is causing me to get some serious crows feet. So I just made an appointment to get glasses. I know....its kind of devastating after all these years without. Although my sister in law tells me glasses really frame a middleaged face beautifully. Apparently. Who knew?

    So I totally get you and also feel your pain - I don't care how shallow it sounds, lol.

    I also cannot wait to catch up with you at some point this year to sympathise with you in person. I will keep you posted!

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  5. Awww~ I feel your pain. I'm 52 and have had bifocals for several years now. And the hairs been colored for even longer. :)

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  6. Glasses, grey hair, saggies... these are the badges we wear proudly to let the world know that we are survivors! I plucked out my first grey at age 15, and stopped coloring in my mid 40's. I believe the beauty that starts from within overcomes the little nuisances that come with age. You, JJ, are drop-dead gorgeous, and will always be!

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  7. smiles...i let the grey have its way...no color here..i have it pretty bad in my beard...and gasp...glasses...i hate to admit but i am going to need them...my near vision is already starting to blur...ugh...i have an appointment later this week...

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  8. I'm so nearsighted that I can't read anything without my glasses, but I opted years ago for progressives, so I only wear one pair. My hair is completely white, but I do remember once upon a time it was another color. I'm a little older than you, JJ. Just turned seventy. :-)

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  9. Isn't it funny that when we are growing up, all these progressions in life are seen as a step up but when we get to a certain age, they are seen as a step down? Just sayin'...

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  10. Reminds me of a line from a Jimmy Buffett song - he's speaking about relationships but the sentiment is the same - "we all got 'em"

    I have bifocal contacts! How about that for high tech. Have had them for about 5 years now - couldn't live without them (kind of like relationships!) As for the grey hair - been coloring for years - I asked my hair dresser one day when I should stop and just let it go grey. Her reply was "as long as you can lift your arms up to you head to put the dye on you should keep coloring!"

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  11. Ah, a few grey hairs is dignified.
    As for glasses, well, I don't need them so far, but that would feel a bit offensive to realize.

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  12. Oh JJ, you make me laugh and hey you put it off far longer than most so be proud. I had to give into the glasses - distance and bifocals in my mid 40's - being a computer programmer ruined my eyes. Then by 50 the grey was so wiry and stubborn in my temples that it wouldn't take color and then cancer brought on more of the wiry suckers, ugh, it's a process of denial and accpetance and it can be painful, hang in there!! Hugs.

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  13. we can't fight it Joanna, just accept..not an easy thing to do!

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  14. Well like you, I am at the same stage. Almost. I don´t need glasses for farsightedness. Yet.
    Last month I tried using a contact lens in one eye for reading and none in the other. It worked great. But every time I have to put them in I sit and fumble for about half an hour...not fun. So I´m back to using my reading glasses! :(

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  15. When my grandson Jack was born people said he was just like me. No hair, tubby and drooled a lot...

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  16. I hear ya! I have glasses and grey hair too.

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  17. Love, here's the good news for your day: You HAVE hair! :-)

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  18. Okay JJ...first off, you are not to call them bifocals anymore! "Progressives", my dear, "Progressives". Terminology is crucial! Secondly, "Progressives" are not dead give-aways as are "bifocals". They look just like normal glasses. (Some very smart Baby-Boomer must have come up with this!) As far as the gray goes, it sounds like you and I are at an equivalent stage in our gray battle. As of late, I'm also finding enough of them to stop counting. I have been coloring my hair for several years, but only for fun, and now I'm thinking I might have to begin coloring out of necessity. Grrr. I'm not quite there yet, though. I'm holding off as long as possible! Keep your chin up (oh goodness, that's another thing that's beginning to sag!)

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  19. Hihi, welcome to the club.;) And I am almost a decade younger that you - it is impressive you are only now noticing any grays.;) Grey hair is nothing to worry about, it is genetic and not really a sign of aging (at least I keep telling myself;) I had my first grays when I was 29, so imagine how that felt. Have been coloring my hair as long as I remember. All I can say about grey hair is that it is unfair that on men it looks sexy and distinguished, while when it comes to women (with a few very rare exceptions) it makes us looks old and worn.;)
    I have had contacts too since I was 25, but fortunately no need for bifocals yet. I have noticed though that when I have my contacts on, I can no longer read as well as I used to.;)
    Well, what the heck, as long as we have our health, right?;)
    Have a great weekend - wearing black or otherwise.;)
    xoxo

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  20. "Prior to this revelation, I knew with absolute certainty that I only had 17 grays scattered around my head, and I know that because I counted them on a regular basis-- wearing my reading glasses and using a 10x magnifying mirror and shining a super-sized flashlight at my head."

    OH you Baby Boomers. Welcome to the club. BTW, did you also use a second mirror to see your backside? YOu never know what's lurking there. Perhaps ignorance is bliss.
    Dianne (who wears trifocals)

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  21. Hahaha! Yeah, I've been there. I wear progressives now - yippee (note sarcastic tone), and have had my hair stylist work wonders for a few years. She tells me I have my own "natural highlights", but I'm in denial - what I can't see with my own eyes doesn't really exist - right?

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  22. aging is a gift my 73 year old father told me today...his birthday.

    he's celebrating making it this far with his diabetes and open heart surgery....

    so embrace those grey hairs and like you, the glasses are finding their way to my face much more often than just a month ago.......xo

    ps...grey hair and glasses....so much better than the alternative :)

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  23. I know what you mean about the glasses. It's like I turned forty and fell apart. Within a year I had my first cavity and went from no glasses to bifocals. UGH!!

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  24. Hi Joanna! Just saw your comment over on my blog. I must say, I did enjoy Proof of Heaven but felt the doctor who wrote the book is a terrible writer!

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  26. I finally caved and went and got readers and a light bulb went off I have less head aches and see so much better....okay gray hair I'm going Saturday...about two weeks too late....but my man isn't complaining and I bet yours isn't either!

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  27. I never grow tired of your writing style!
    :)

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  28. You nut!!! I've had glasses for MANY years; thought it was cool at first. I even did the contact thing only to discover that by pulling down on the skin below my eye to insert the contact the skin was becoming droopy. Wait till you get to the point that even with glasses you need binoculars to read interstate road signs so you are in the right lane and take the right exit!!

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  29. Join the club, my friend. You have officially arrived to seniorhood. The number of your years on earth are not what determines your initiation, it is just what you are describing in this post. Enjoy, there are lots of us.

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  30. I've been using glasses since I was 18. A glass of whisky, glass of brandy, glass of vodka...

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  31. I like the idea of a magnifying glass.....I have a little old one that belonged to my Great Grandmother, maybe I could put it on a chain and wear it!!

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  32. Funny how the glasses and the grays hit at the same time. I went my first 45 years without glasses and now I'm nearly blind, as well as grey around the gills. I think my first pair of reading glasses worked for about 5 years before I had to resort to bifocals. Geesh!

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  33. The grey hairs we can cover, the readers are a glaring reminder of middle age. I am lost without mine. I have some for the focal length to sit at a computer, another pair to read and one for back up. I am forever misplacing them. I have sunglass readers but prefer to wear my regular sunglasses with my readers over them. Fashion statement? No way, but I do what I gotta do. :)

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