Can I fix my glasses?

Lynlee Derrick

More stories from Lynlee Derrick

Emma Zawacki
March 15, 2021
Linus Kaechele
February 17, 2021
Can+I+fix+my+glasses%3F

Shaking the bedside table, the morning monster known as the alarm clock stridently shrieks, screaming a sound that haunts my languorous mornings. Opening my eyes carefully like curtains blocking out the sun, I sluggishly sneak my hand out from the covers and fumble to turn off the alarm.

My hand falls limp, using the bedside table as a resting spot, as the noise finally retreats back into the clock like a scolded dog.

Hums of the fan above playing with the woeful wind current in my stuffy room replace the lack of sound. Covers rustle as my body protests what has just begun: a new day.

Through my thinly veiled eyes—only my eyelids for armor against the sacrosanct morning sun—sun shyly streams through the layers on my dirty blinds. Shadows of objects shifting with the new day entice my eyes to give in; I open them only to be greeted by a world that feels preoccupied with someone else’s wishes.

Outlines remain blurry, a constant in yet another trite day, despite my eyes wrangling the innate feeling to fall back into bed in order to remain wide open.

A habit that’s become clockwork takes over my susceptible, morning mind; I lean forward, shift to the left, and reach for an inexplicable case. Feeling out a slightly malleable object, one of my hands had become accustomed to like a beloved friend, I latch on and lift it into my lap. Knees folded down with feet pressing flat against each other, I leave the case placated in the middle of it all. This action, repeated daily, has begun to rival religious rituals.

Gently unlatching the fortifying button snap, I push back the top and remove the contents inside: my glasses.

Desperate to see the world through a new lens, one that would clarify what exactly my eyes are devouring, I slip the glasses on whilst pushing through my knotted jungle of hair. Yet, as the temples of my glasses slither like a scaleless, scheming snake onto my head, distinct feelings of disquiet and malaise pool in the front of my mind.

This day—this harmless morning—was like the others, so why was the pit of my stomach, the very core of my soul and mind, screaming out?

And as I opened my eyes, glasses presiding over my face, the sudden realization of my situation took me by surprise.

Despite the numerous times I had cleaned the lens to perfection, something I took pride in, there was a growing collection of dirt in the bottom of my vision—the right side of my glasses.

Worriedly, my eyes focus on the spot while analyzing what I had done with my glasses the previous day. Brown, dark, and splotchy, I note the characteristics in my mind; was something in the case dirtying my glasses? They had never been like this before.

I set aside the growing unease as I gather the case in my hands that were wired with nerves. As I frantically search the insides, uncomfortable by this strange, distasteful situation, my right eye becomes clouded by the patch.

I realize that the dirt has spread like an unshakeable virus as the left lens becomes infected. What were once clear lenses that I had used just the day before, a morning just like this, had become clustered in dirt.

Bewildered at the dilemma, my typically collected mind scrambled like the eggs my grandmother would cook on a warm summer morning. Calm, cool, collected, I think. I leash my mind in an effort to be realistic, and the world’s colors and objects blend together once again as I remove my anomalous glasses.

The world was no longer dirty with the lens changing the way I see. Relief washed over me.

But as quickly as it came, it soon is swept with the tides of life as my eyes latch onto a familiar color; between the blurred lines of my bed and body, a barely visible dot of morose brown appears.

My eyes widen, questions in my mind scaring away any doubt, as I watch the world in front of me, no longer filtered through my glasses, become littered with that haunting color.

The rays that once sang through my dirty blinds retreat back into the sun as my room becomes an illuminated, blurry scene of brown. My head whips around in confusion, denying to admit that my eyes would betray me like this.

Yet as I peer in every corner of my room, rubbing my eyes, tears forging riverbeds in my face, the color never changes; variations of brown to resemble the colorful shading that once inhabited my room reveal the truth.

Somehow, someway, my view has become soiled as pessimistic thoughts flood my new reality. Just mere hours ago, I saw color, joy, and happiness. The sun was just streaming minutes ago.

Everything was different just a few minutes ago.

Why now? When did the world start to deceive me with its beautiful colors, sights, sounds, and all life had to offer, only to show me its true colors?

When did the way I see the world change?

My mind runs rampant, breaking the leash I had tied. Pleads for the old way—the one I was accustomed to—to come back to my welcoming arms escape my lips in the forms of soul-shuddering sobs.

Can I go back? I just want to see the beautiful subjects that the poets wrote about, the painters depicted, and the sleepers dreamed up. I just want to see with clarity once again. I just want normality.

Collapsing into my bed, I am left swallowed in questions, but one directs them all.

Did I cause this?