Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The Little Boy With Glasses

My firstborn is growing up so much these days, I feel every once in awhile I should sit down and document the changes going on in his life.

The biggest most important thing to happen to Jett lately is the diagnosis of a lazy eye.  Jett has officially become a glasses wearer.

As a mom this has been an incredibly difficult transition FOR ME.  Suddenly my perfect baby has such a HUGE obstacle to overcome and it makes me so incredibly sad that life is not going to be as easy as I hoped for him.

As a boy my biggest fear is that he's going to be bullied for being the little boy with glasses.  He's already so skinny (though tall) and now he's got glasses to boot.  It doesn't seem so harsh for girls, not until the teen years when contacts would be an option. Every once in awhile I hear bigger boys say, 'hey look, he has glasses.' I've never heard them say it with malice...but I fear there will be one day.

The discovery of the lazy eye came about when his eye started to wander, so he was looking a bit cross-eyed at times.  His preschool teachers noticed it and said it might be a good idea to mention it to his ped at our next appt.  Well, I didn't have a ped appt scheduled until August when he would be turning 4 and wasn't going to fuss about it until then.  But over Christmas our families were in town and THEY ALL NOTICED the eye.  So...off the Dr. we went.  Lo and behold poor Jett can't see out of his left eye AT ALL.

His glasses have an insanely high prescription for the bad eye, that glass is THICK.  He'll be in these glasses for 2 months and then the shitty part...he has to start wearing a patch OVER THE GOOD EYE.  Which means he will be damn near blind.

It breaks my heart.

And I have to be the enforcer.  I have to FORCE my poor baby to wear the glasses and this goddamn patch so that one day he will be able to see.

Luckily my younger sister (and Dom's mom, genetics at work) has a lazy eye and so at least this is familiar territory and I know what a lazy eye is and how they try to fix it and I have someone to talk to about the whole thing.  Also Jett has someone to talk to should he need.

Know what a lazy eye is?  Let me explain for those who don't know.  Basically it's when you have poor vision in one eye at a young age and your brain decides the blurred image coming from the one eye is irrelevant and quits using it.  It shuts down all the information coming from the one eye and so the eye just gets weaker and weaker and if it's not treated you are become near blind in one eye.  To fix it you have to force the brain to use that bad eye and how you do that is get rid of the good eye so the brain has no choice but to accept and use the information coming from the bad eye.

Jett's glasses right now are supposed to be strengthening the weak eye but what that means for him is that sometimes he eyesight is WORSE when he wears his glasses.  This is obnoxiously a GOOD thing because it means the brain is attempting to use the bad eye but try explaining that to a 3 year old!!!  The next step in another month is to patch the good eye and OMG I am dreading it!  It starts slow with just an hour a day and then slowly increase it until by September he should be wearing the patch for 8 hours a day.

Luckily kids are incredibly resilient and he doesn't seem too fussed about the whole thing.  I know he doesn't love the glasses but he tolerates them well enough.  He always asks to take them off at some point in the day and I let him have about an hour break but generally he'll put them back on without too much of a fight.

Unfortunately this is probably a lifelong chronic condition.  It was caught very early (usually it's diagnosed at 5-6 when they hit school age) but I don't know that he will every have great vision in that bad eye.  The goal is to strengthen the eye so that hopefully the eyesight isn't so poor in the left eye but ultimately I think he'll be wearing glasses or contacts for the rest of his life. 

And onwards we march through life whatever it throws at us.



  1. Awww, he looks adorable with the glasses!

    When it comes time to switch to the eyepatch, get him a bandana and a parrot to sit on his shoulder. Being a pirate is much more fun than being the kid with a problem with his eye.

  2. He looks so cute in his glasses!! But I feel you... I don't know how we are going to get through those tough moments in our kids lives... all the stuff we went through and survived... but it's heart breaking when its our own kids. One day I picked Austin up at daycare and he was sitting by himself crying "because no one wanted to play with him." Minor little incident but I had that stomach dropping feeling of "oh god. life is tough and things aren't going to be easy." I remember being teased till I cried in grade school over all kinds of things... I don't know how I'm going to handle that with my own kids. I'm glad at least you have some family who've gone through this, so you have some familiarity to it. xoxo

  3. This is great it was caught now. My niece wasn't so lucky and was age 8 when it was discovered (the age where things become "set"). BUT we and she decorated patches to wear! We used colored pencils and it was a great confidence booster for her. Wish I could post a pic. (Mostly a lurker but enjoy reading blogs such as yours.) Hang in there!!


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