At the ripe old age of 9 I was already batting on the side of being class nerd. I was enrolled in GATE classes, played the violin and flute in the All City Honor Band, got all A’s and was voted Student of the Month on more than a regular basis. The addition of glasses to my repertoire quickly sealed that fate and forever changed the course of my life on the path from generic nerd kid to the full on Nerdgirl that you see before you now.
I started out my be-speckled life with some pretty geeky looking glasses. It might have been the fashion at the time, but I know very readily that I lacked any fashion sense (as witnessed by my love of a pink Smurf tracksuit). To top off the look, I also sported a nice bowl haircut that made me look like an androgynous Chinese transfer student. Needless to say, I was boyfriendless until the last day of elementary school when Ronnie Mahling decided to initiate a long distance phone relationship which I’m pretty sure was a ploy to make Amy Fisher jealous, but that is another tale altogether…
Pre broken glasses incident
When my family stepped up life a notch by moving to the sprawling urban center of Fresno, I was thrust into a whole new world. The world of junior high at Tenaya Middle School. Middle school for any kid is a pretty awkward time. You are hitting puberty and pretty gangly. I had the addded feature of being completely new in a world of kids that had been together since they were 5. My memories of those first semesters of 7th grade were altogether like the movie Mean Girls.
Then I met Becky and Heather through Stacy Behar, a chubby (nice way of saying fat) Jewish girl who was in my yearbook class, who was Heather’s stepsister. Becky and Heather were (to me at least) the spitting image of the quintesential girl clique from teenage dramas. They were popular, good looking, not alltogether Einsteins and all the boys liked them bec ause they had the whiff of slutiness follwing them (even at the tender age of 13). These two quickly took me under their wing for whatever reason. I look back on it now and think I was a makeover project. From geek to chic in 10 easy steps. Besides, I sort of worshipped them and they could make me participate in all the evil little schemes that they cooked up – which were many.
One of the first steps in my makeover was for Becky to sit on my glasses and break them. She broke them so badly, that they were irreparable. I would like to think that this was accidental, but knowing Becky this was probably completely on purpose. Told you. Mean Girls. This prompted my mom to take me to Eyecare 2000 where I firmly stated that I wouldn’t wear glasses anymore and I needed to have contact lenses.
From Geek to Chic – 8th Grade sans glasses
And thus began my 20 year journey with contact lenses…
In my early days of wearing contact lenses, I was an irresponsbile teenager. I would wear them for days on end without ever removing them. This eventually caused a bit of damage to my eyes with some veins fighting for oxygen. My optomotrist warned me that I would be banned from wearing lenses unless I took it seriously which prompted me to finally be a good wearer.
Even with beign responsible, contact lenses are a pain in the ass. Waking up in the mornings, fidgeting around with getting them in, sometimes they are inside out, cleaning them, trying to find your glasses, getting dry eyes… the list goes on and on. They are just not that much fun. But without my glasses or contacts, I was pretty much useless. I like to use the analogy that if I were in pre-historic times, I would’ve been eaten by a dinosaur years ago because I would have mistaken him for a tree trunk.