Even without glasses, we need to remember to put our real-life lenses on.

Note to readers: While the “Community Blogging Network” page on the new crookstontimes.com remains “in development,” we’ve asked some of our bloggers to submit their latest posts to us for publication in our print edition. Here is a post from Margaret Unruh’s “A Life Less Ordinary, Lived in the Everyday” blog.

    Recently, new glasses appeared on my purchase docket.

    Believe me, it was time.

    It seems odd, though, that my new specs are eerily similar to my first.

    It was an exciting milestone:  with joyful anticipation, I skipped into the classroom and informed our student teacher:  “I get to get glasses!”

    A myopic proclamation from a myopic nine-year-old.

    Experience had yet to share the ability to evaluate the terms of this new acquisition, to impart its cautionary recommendation that I might wish to assess the long-term impact of my soon-to-be-lifelong accessory. From the moment I donned them, my glasses became the most valuable of my tangible possessions. Little did I know, I’d need them forever.

    Had it only been as easy to select 2012’s style as it was to decide on 1967’s.  Once upon a time, it was cat-eyes or not.  Period. Today’s frames-and-lenses selection ranks inexhaustible--and somewhat laughable. How, on the nearing-45th anniversary of the diagnosis of my nearsightedness, I left the optical company with the copy of a purchase order is anybody’s guess.  I should still be there weighing the options.

    My look has changed to reflect the era (my cat-eyes are now red and we’ll skip the eighties, please). And though I’d eventually return to glasses, I did experiment with contacts. Generating cool and mature teenaged excitement in proportion to that created by the initial third grade prescription, the actuality  of contact lenses offered freedom from smudged glass (or galvanized plastic), bent frames, and a pinched nose. It also offered a new way of continuing to be able to see.

    Upon returning from the first fitting of those tiny, green-tinted foreign objects, I gleefully ran from the car to the house. A bit short-sighted, I entered the kitchen via the bottom section of the screen door. Miscalculating the porch step at full-tilt is not recommended at any age.

    Many of us know how it is with new vision tools. . .our eyes need time to recalibrate. Things eventually come into focus; we adjust, and we’re off and running again.

    But sometimes it takes time.

    Myopia does not discriminate. Lacking in both insight and foresight regarding the realities of our human condition, we can all crash at one time or another. Squinting to see what’s ahead, we may trip over nearness—pain, need, our own feet, or even each other—on the path from here to there. Involved in our own-ness, we forget to be a little more near sighted.

    And while we often want the everyday lenses that will help us to see clearly:

    We occasionally forget to put them on.