This new phase of my life called ‘POST CATARACT SURGERY’ is causing me much grief and unrest!  Really, I accept the fact that I had to have the surgery.  It’s one of the unpleasant things one has to deal with as we accrue more mileage on the body.  So, it HAD to be done, and I know that.  I am still not liking the results of it, however.  The surgery itself went well and all is well and as it should be, according to my doctor.  However… I do not like the way it has changed my eyes…for the worse.  WAIT…that is not entirely true.  It has definitely made my distance vision much better!  I can drive without glasses and see the TV across the room without glasses.  That’s a wonderful thing!  But, before the surgery, I had enough near vision that I could see my telephone or read the instructions on a box of cake mix…if I had to…without them on.

BUT, NOW… all my close vision is gone…and it’s driving me crazy!  This is normal and not a poor result of my surgery, by the way)It is also making me crazy that I have to try to keep up with a pair of readers so that when one of a million things that I need to look at in a day pops up, I can decipher what it is.  I tried putting the glasses on my head…but my head must be wonky or something…they just won’t stay.  Now, I see people all the time who walk around, go shopping, drive a car, go swimming, dance, play, eat …you know, all the important things in life…with a pair of glasses or sun glasses poised ‘just so’ on their heads…looking ever so cute!  And, they never budge!  But mine slip down around my neck or fall off the back of my head and slide down my back!

I’ve tried using those ‘hang ’em around your neck’ strings…but no.  They flap and flop and and bounce around on the area that is my ‘boobage’ and for all the world it looks as if they are on a trampoline.  Plus, Little Levi thinks they are hanging there purely for his entertainment and amusement!.  I’ve taken them and stuck them into my cleavage and hoped for the best.  No. No, they didn’t go anywhere, but I was most uncomfortable!  I know what I’m doing…whining!  Don’t you hate to hear a grown up whine?  It’s much worse than a child whining and that’s enough to make your hair curl.  That’s why I am not ever going to speak about this again.  Or, I promise to try really hard not to.

So, what’s a girl to do?  Let me just tell you.    I have worn glasses all my life and I never minded so much.  It is much easier than this on and off and on and off game I have to play now.  I got my doctor to give me a prescription for glasses that has the reader part at the bottom and just a touch of correction at the top.  Then last week, I went to the eye glasses factory to get them made.  And, here’s where the drama starts.

They advertise that they will have your glasses in an hour.  They have a lab and technicians right there.  And, it looks…to me, at least…as if it is well stocked.  Or, if it’s not…it should be!  I know that some folks, like my boys in their younger days, do have to have special lens ordered due to the severity of their prescription.  I get that.  But in MY case, they had to order the lens…because I needed anti-glare lenses.  Now, I have always gotten anti-glare lens…it cuts down on glare when you are in a setting with fluorescent lights.  But, now I need them because of the halo I see around lights when I drive at night.  Which is a normal occurrence after cataract surgery as well as a normal part of aging.

But, it was going to take 2 weeks to get my lens in.  2 weeks!!!!  Not acceptable.  I asked if I could have them shipped overnight.  They said they would try.  (I am going on a trip this week…Thur-Sun…and I wanted to have them so I wouldn’t lose my ever-lovin’ mind and act all ill and stuff in front of my friends).  So, I told them I would wait while they called and checked.  (Because I had another option to get them).  They called and they called and they called.   “Sorry, we can’t get them to answer,”  they said,  “We will call you as soon as we get in touch and get an answer.”  So, I made sure M. got my number and I got hers and she promised to call me as soon as she could.  And, she called me later in the afternoon to say that she didn’t make contact but would try first thing the next morning.  I told her that would be fine.  And, she did.  She called the next morning and said that the glasses would be ready on Tuesday!  I thanked her and told her how much I appreciated her efficiency.

And, I was all set to go pick up my glasses on Tuesday.  Yea!  All was working out just fine!  My youngest came home this weekend, with a special friend, and I went to Publix to pick up some goodies for them, because what they cook is always better than what I cook.  As I was walking into the store, I heard someone call my name.  I turned around and there was M.  She asked if the store had called me, because she had been off.  I told her they had not.  I sensed some bad news was coming and I was not going to like it.  She said that the maker of the anti-glare lens had called and could not get my lens here in time for me to have them before my trip.  It was still going to be two weeks!!!

All sorts of responses ran through my mind.  “This is ridiculous! ”  “Just cancel my order and I’ll take my business elsewhere!”  “I will tell everyone to never shop there for eyewear!”  “I am furious and about to make an ugly scene and embarrass myself and you and it’s what you deserve!”  But, none of that came out of my mouth.  Just because you think it doesn’t mean you have to say it.  And, even though thoughts may pop into your mind and you can’t always control that…you CAN control what comes OUT of your mouth and what others hear.  I looked at M., a young girl who moved here from another town to work with this company.  She is young, not yet married, and doesn’t know many people here.  I had invited her to visit our church when I found out these things about her as we were talking at the store.  What kind of witness would it be if I told her all the things that came to this sad mind.  So, I said, “That’s OK, M., you tried your best and I appreciate that.  You just call me when they come in and I’ll come and get them.”  She looked so relieved and apologised again.  We parted ways and I breathed a prayer.  “Thank-you, God, for reminding me to speak as you would speak.  Thank you for taking those words out of my mouth and putting kind ones in place.”  To be totally honest with you, my friends, that doesn’t always happen.  Sometimes I DO say things I’m sorry for and ashamed at myself for speaking.  But, I really try…with God’s help.

I finished my shopping, came home, got everything put away, and was sitting down to rest for a few minutes when my phone rang.  I answered it, and it was M.  “Mrs. Owens,” she said, “I just came in to work and your glasses are here and ready for you to pick up!  I don’t know how this happened.  They told me they couldn’t do it, but here they are.”

I went right on to the store and picked them up.  And, oh what a great difference they make!  I can just wear them and not have to change anymore!  I thanked her and spoke to the manager and praised her efficiency.  And walked out the door a happy woman.  This is great!

Now, I don’t know if this little episode in the “Life and Times of Tonja” has a true lesson in it or not.  I am no great theologian nor writer who can take a little nugget of wisdom and turn it into a meaningful devotional thought.  What I get is that God has wonderful surprises for us when we least expect it.  And, He wants us to enjoy the wonderful things He surprises us with.  I am enjoying my glasses.  But, how guilty I would have felt if I had acted unkindly toward M.  How embarrassed I would feel if those horrible words had been spoken out loud.  Just a little ‘life lesson’ that God reminded me of.