Morgan was reading to me the other day from a typical chapter book when I had to stop him for the hundredth time & ask him to try again because something didn't make sense. I was a little confused with the sudden backwards trek in his reading skills which, since his SSS diagnosis have really blossomed.
Without even bothering to try again he looked up & uttered, "I can't read it again, the font is two different shades & I can't see it well."
He stared at me waiting for an explanation.
I debated how to answer him. This is a symptom/side effect of the scotopic sensitivity syndrome, but it's odd for it to flare it's head while he's got the tinted lenses on. His next appointment isn't for a few months, & if I mention going in early he'd probably fall apart. I decide to try a little experiment instead.
I take the book & look at it to verify, first, that it's not poorly printed. When I hand it back I tell him to put the book right up against his face. He does, while saying, in that oh so hated tone, whatever. Then I I told him to pull it away from his face until the font was crystal clear. He didn't get too far, but you could tell when he'd hit the point because there was a look of shock on his face.
"Um, so yeah the font isn't different colours, that was weird."
"Yes, it was. I think you need to go see the Eye Guy."
"You shouldn't need to hold the book that close to your face Mate."
"I don't want to go."
"There are things in life I don't want to do either, but sometimes you have to suck it up & deal."
"I don't like him."
"He is kinda geeky, but he's a good Dr."
"He's not funny."
"But he can help you see."
I've suspected for a long time that Morgan needed reading glasses & it won't come as a huge surprised to our optometrist either who has debated, several times over, giving Morgan glasses for reading. In the past he's hoped that the underdeveloped muscle would work itself out, but I'm thinking after 3 years of waiting it's simply not going to happen.
Morgan sulked a bit longer & I pretended not to notice. I respect the fact that he's fed up with people inspecting his eyes, that he doesn't want to need glasses, that he wants to feel normal. At the same time, there's a time to mope & there's a time to pick yourself up & keep going.
I decided to attempt another experiment with him. I find the long awaited next book in the Paddington series onto the kindles & adjust the font on his to magnificently huge & hand it to him. I ask him to read to me while I sort out the papers spread all over the school table. He managed to read so fast that I scramble to figure out where he is when the mess is cleaned up. He peeks at my kindle & noticed the normal sized font & squeals:
"Why is your font so tiny on your kindle? How can you see that?"
"It's not tiny Morgan, it's normal sized. In fact, I think the font in books I read is a bit smaller then this."
He's quite for a minute.
"You need to see the Eye Guy."
"I really don't want to."
"You need to."
He fights tears.
"You know it'll help you!"
"But you don't understand! It's hard enough balancing one pair of glasses, what if I end up with two pairs!"
"What?! No! You won't have 2 pairs! If you get reading glasses I'll send them to the mainland to have them tinted. You'd just wear one pair that will magnify the words & keep them from dancing on the page."
Quietness. Sniffles. "I still don't want to have glasses."
"Sometimes, when we pray and ask for help the answers come in ways we don't expect. I can assure you I wasn't expecting to have to give up milk to get rid of my migraines. It wasn't easy, do you know how much stuff has milk in it?!"
"It's just milk Mom."
And it's true, it is just milk. Milk that makes me absolutely miserable if I'm crazy enough to indulge in it because it's not fair. I explain it to him, & while it doesn't take away the sting of another visit to the Eye Guy he gets the point.
When we hit the cheap store so they could pick up a last minute Father's Day gift we discovered reading glasses there. I made him try on a random pair I grabbed. He was grumbling & muttering about it, until I shoved a book under his nose.
"Wow, it is clearer."
"I told you."
"So I'll make that appointment then?"
"I guess so."