... the journal

The Guest
Refrigerator Door

From  my cousin Donna's   fridge

DG-PEACE.jpg (13262 bytes)

She has refrigerator poetry magnets, so a lot of these magnets will be sayings she's made out of the magnets

* Discussion *

Talk about it here.


Deja Dead
Kathy Reichs

(not for the squeamish!)


Dharma & Greg
Spin City

Pictures from the Cincinnati are now up at Steve's Club Photo page.

Pictures from our Family reunion are on my own Club Photo page.

That's it for today!


22 August 2001

Dick Tuilliers died.

Now I haven't seen, heard from, or thought of Dick in 30 years. In fact, I can't even picture how he looked 30 years ago. I barely remember his wife Barbara, who was my friend back then, and who apparently preceeded him in death (long enough ago that Dick is survived by his second wife).

The only reason Dick's death has any impact on my life is that Walt read about it in the San Francisco Chronicle and when I tried to remember the name of their oldest son, who was a baby when I worked with Barbara in La Leche League, Walt handed me the obituary to read for myself.

When I glanced at the paper, I could see that it was hopeless. There was absolutely no way I was going to be able to read that tiny print, and I reached for the magnifying glass.

I'm blind.

Well, I'm not really blind. I actually had a appointment with the eye doctor recently and had my prescription refilled (you may recall I bought new glasses in January), so theoretically I should be able to see. But glasses somehow don't quite correct my vision, though according to the charts they bring me up to pretty darn close to 20/20.

Maybe it's the astygmatism (I've been told that if you can't describe what it's like, that's astygmatism. That's the very best "description" of it that I've ever heard. Anybody who has it will understand, and anybody who doesn't will be shaking their heads in confusion.) Or maybe it's the cataracts in both eyes, which they tell me "aren't quite ripe enough" for surgery. But it's probably just too many hours sitting in front of a computer monitor.

I've worn glasses since I was 10. I was born with ambliopia, or "lazy eye blindness," which wasn't discovered until I was 10 because when you're a kid you assume everybody is like you, so I just assumed that everybody had one good eye and one bad eye.

Nowadays they say that if you catch the condition early enough, the lazy eye can be trained to see normally, but by the time a kid is 10, it's too old to really do anything about it. I wore an eye patch for awhile. I had to put it on my good eye for a couple of hours each night and read with the lazy eye, to try to strengthen it. Boy, did I hate that. The effect of it was that when I took the patch off and walked into a dark room, I was literally "blind" in the good eye. I never could figure out why.

Over the years, I've just always explained it that I don't use my right eye for vision. The doctors tell me that I use it more than I think I do, but I really don't. People ask me how I cope with no depth perception, but this is the only "reality" I've ever known and I always thought my depth perception was just fine until I was at a hands-on science museum where they had a contraption that tested your depth perception. I was so far off of "normal" that it makes me wonder what all you normal people actually see.

Since I don't use the right eye for vision, as I've grown older and everything else has started sagging, my right eye lid has started closing. There is nothing I can do about it. It just sits there at half mast a lot of the time, and if I go to read something or work on the computer, it just closes completely. Since I have always had "squinty eyes" anyway, maybe it's not as bad as I think. I'm hardly aware of it at all until I see a photo of myself and realize that my eye is closed. Even when I try to open it all the way, I can't.

me-eye.jpg (10936 bytes)

It's hell to get old!

I've found that in the last few years my eyesight has changed so much that it has affected my lifestyle. I now keep a magnifying glass in the car in case I have to read a map. I don't read the newspaper much because the print is too small and it's just too much work. Looking things up in the phone book takes a lot of squinting. And if it's a San Francisco Chronicle obituary, well...time for the magnifying glass again.

They say that when I have cataract surgery I'll be amazed at how much better my vision will be. I've already told the doctor that the eyes will be done one at a time. Ain't nobody mucking around with my "good eye" until I know that I have usable vision out of the "bad eye."

In the meantime, I'll make sure to keep the magnifying glass close at hand (if it got put someplace strange, I probably couldn't see well enough to find it)

One Year Ago:
Complaint Song

Some pictures from this journal
can be found at
Club Photo

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Created 8/22/01 by Bev Sykes