Monday, April 19, 2010

are you wearing glasses?


i got new glasses and contacts this weekend. i am still trying to get used to them. it's kind of funny how a silly thing such as getting new contacts and glasses can get me to think too deeply about my life. i know. it's weird. but the last time i went to the eye doctor was a year ago. i remember when i first got glasses. i was in 8th grade. i had no idea that i didn't have perfect vision. i remember sitting in math class and not being able to see the board very clearly. i noticed that i started squinting a lot, and that i preferred sitting on the front row. which was odd, because i hated being on the front row. i hated standing out. i hated being picked on to answer questions. 

anyway, i remember finally getting my first pair of glasses. i remember walking outside with them on and being completely shocked. i had no idea that i could actually see this well. i forgot what things were supposed to look like. i forgot that there were trees on the mountains. i forgot how green leaves were. i forgot how incredible clouds can look when you can actually see them. i also forgot how dirty the streets could look. and how much i hated math when i could actually see the problems on the board. maybe back then i didn't realize much about perspective. but looking back i feel like i have learned a lot. 

at my latest eye appointment, i had learned that my eyes had gotten significantly worse than the appointment i had last february. in a way it scared me. i am tired of my eyes getting worse. aren't they supposed to just stabilize now? no? not until i am in my 30's? oh great, but after that i will have to worry about not being able to read a book. so when does it get better? i was a little frustrated. i hate not having control over something. especially in my own body. my twin sister has 20/20 vision. sean has perfect vision as well. my eyes are worse than both my parents. 

but then i put my new contacts in. and i had that familiar feeling come back. i had forgotten how good i could see. i forgot what things were really supposed to look like. i was able to order some new frames, new contacts, and now i can actually read the street signs and the previews at the movie. it has been nice having that back. my eyes no longer hurt from straining them to see. straining that i wasn't even aware that i was doing.

i am not trying to make a story about eyes sound dramatic. because it is really not a big deal. my eyes could always be worse. they really could be. i am not legally blind, and i actually have eyes. i really need to be grateful. i guess the point of my story is that sometimes we forget how good life really can be. and yes, sometimes we forget how lame it can be, or that we are being lame, or that people who make us feel like crap are lame, or that we deserve better. but for the most part, i think we forget how good it can be. 

lately i have been feeling a little unimpressed with myself. not that i am normally impressed with myself. ha. i mean you have read my blog. i am somewhat of a mess. but i just get angry thinking about how i spent $80 on make-up and hair stuff the other day. sean seemed flabbergasted when i told him the amount and then i started to freak out and think "oh my gosh i have problems. who spends $80 that they don't really have on hair stuff and make-up???" then i remembered that a lot of people do. no one is perfect. we all do that every once in a while. at least i didn't spend $80 on drugs right? and if that is your cup of tea? i am not judgin'. i love everyone. i'm just saying i spent $80 on stupid petty stuff. and i am not going to regret it. it made me feel better. so there. it was not stupid to me.

anyway, it made me think of this stupid little letter i wrote to myself and to my senior class during the last week of high school. my english teacher wanted us to each write a letter and she would put them all in a book to give to the new seniors at the beginning of next year. i had completely lost the letter. but a good friend of mine emailed it to me several years ago when i was having a rough time. i just re-read it and thought i would share it. she sent it to me without telling me what it was. then at the end she said, "you wrote this. you helped me through a tough time, and now i want you to read your own words that once lifted me up when i was down." i laughed as i was reading what i wrote. i thought i was so smart when i wrote it. reading it now, it feels somewhat childish, and my statements are generally obvious. but that is okay. i wrote it when i was 17 and when i thought i was old and mature. here it is..

So many different thoughts come to my mind when I try to think about what I
want to say. The funny things is that I can't even put them into words. It's
hard to believe that we will all be graduating next week. I have so many
random thoughts that are racing throught my head and there is a lot that I
want to say. It scares me to think that this is it. But deep down I know
that this is just the beginning.

I want to say some of the most important lessons that I have learned this
year. I learned that first of all you can't make people change. Second of
all I learned that people change whether you like it or not. It's kind of
funny how it's like that isn't it? It doesn't quite make sense does it? 

I also learned that life is not fair. You can give all that you have and never
get anything in return yet some people never give and always seem to get
everything.  One thing we need to remember though is that if we never take 
that risk and give, than we would never have room to receive.

Life isn't about being popular and having a boyfriend. It's not about nice
cars, cute clothes, and, lots of money. Life goes much deeper than that. It
goes far deeper than we will ever be able to understand. It's about taking
risks, learning lessons, getting hurt, hurting others, loving others no
matter what, making mistakes, bouncing back up after a hard fall, and
helping others bounce back after a hard fall. 

It's about unexpected phone calls and special notes to let people know you care.
It's about making people feel needed because believe it or not, the most important thing that people need in this life is to feel needed. It's about having a purpose. It's about knowing that someone's life wouldn't be that same without you in it.  
It's about knowing that someone is thinking about you.
Life is a journey, life is a lesson, life is a teacher, life is a test.

I have been hurt many times in my life, but I know that I have hurt many
people as well. I can't go back and change that, but I can learn from what
I have done. I have made many mistakes and watched many friends make
mistakes. I've watched them change, forget who they are, and sadly forget
what life is really about. But with out all the bad times I never would
have  realized what the good was. I wouldn't have learned that I can't
change people. All I can do is affect people by my actions and they can
choose where to go from there.

My example can not only teach others, but most importantly myself. I've
learned to see myself through others eyes. I've realized that I have grown
and I have seen who I want to become. I've realized that I have found
myself by being myslef. I've realized that I shouldn't have been trying to
change things all along, I should have been trying to change the way I see

I've learned a lot this year, but the most important thing that I learned
was to give all that I have and not expect anything in return. That's how I
became stronger, that's how I found out who I really am, but most
importantly that's how I found out what I'm made of. 


so yes. i wrote that when i was 17. it is not grammatically correct. but i still am never grammatically correct. and looking back, i would say that might not have been the moment that i realized what i was made of. i was only 17. i had been through a lot, but i had no idea what was to come. i would say re-reading that letter after my friend sent it to me was when i realized what i was made of. not completely, but it stuck with me, and i made some huge changes after that. i guess you could say i put my new glasses on. and i am trying to do that again. i am trying to change my outlook on life. i have forgotten how good that it can be. i have forgotten what i am capable of, and i have forgotten that i deserve to be better. not only for myself, but for my family, and for sean.

does this mean i am going to cook every night, and clean the house every day? ha, yeah right. no. that will probably never happen. i will probably still tell inappropriate jokes still, make a fool of myself and be totally awkward at times. but i am going to try to not be so hard on myself. i had forgotten how much that affects other people. being down and sad is not only hard on ourselves, but hard on the people who love us and who have to see us that way. it's not always easy to fix. it's easier said than done. but i promise if you read this blog, and you ever need anything, i am always here for you. and i promise that life is so much easier with glasses. whether you need them or not.

this probably made sense to no one but me. and that's okay. i don't really care. it's my blog, and my life, and i hope you all feel the same way about your own blogs or journals. don't write to please others. write to inspire yourself, and through that you will affect others.

if you stuck around until the end? thank you :) i know it was long and cheesy. oh well. i think i might just go take a walk now.... have a great night!


Chelsea Robbins said...

I love the glasses btw.

Cailie said...

great letter! You're a good writer! Very encouraging:) I blow money all the time and then feel guilty..especially when my husband is disappointed in me. I'm really trying to get better about it because we do not have money to blow right now!

Becca said...

Aw, no it wasn't cheesy or too long. I really liked this! Thanks...
Yout new glasses look adorable. But I also like your thoughts. Really good stuff.
Thanks, Chloe!

Michael & Mindy said...

Not long and cheesy at all! And, the letter wasn't childish. I would say it was anythign BUT childish. I liked it. So true. My favorite part was about how life isn't fair and sometimes it seems like some people give everythign and have nothing and some give nothing and have everything. My sister and I were just talking about that exact thing the other day. It is unfair, huh? But..I like that you said we should give it all and not expect anything. So true. This is making me want to try a little harder. To put on my glasses, I guess. glasses are currently the wrong prescription and I need new ones...and my contacts are kinda old too. I should get on that...
But seriously. Thanks for posting this. Your blog rocks. I was glad to get on and see you'd updated. It made me happy. And I know this post is gonna make a lot of people happy. Your posts always do I think. And your new glasses are super cute. Anyway. Hope your walk was fun. Hope you and Seany are happy these days. I know we chatted for a second today, but I feel like we havn't talked for a while, so I hope things are good with you :)

Jenni said...

I loved this post Chloe. Sporadic, chaotic, and silly with a hint of caring and a sign of what an amazing lady you are. :)
AND You look fabulous in your glasses!!! I am the same way with my Rx getting worse and worse but one of these days they will stabilize and i'll get the eye surgery so I never have to deal with it aagin.....but I may still wear my glasses from time to time...I'll just put plain lenses in :)

its simple love said...

We seem to have a lot in common. I am glad to hear of your life lessons. Thanks for sharing. We can't expect anything in return right? Still learning that one...


p.s. I wanted to let you know I am doing an argentine Alpargata (tom's) giveaway on my blog. Hop on over when you get the chance!

Krysten @ After 'I Do' said...

Chloe, you are seriously awesome. And reading this totally brought my night up. So thanks for being amazing and I'm so happy I read your blog!

Also... I can't remember the last time I went to the eye doctor. I haven't worn my contacts since I was a senior in high school (which was 8 years ago - ugh, I feel old). I RARELY wear my glasses. How bad is that!? I don't even want to know how bad my eyes are. It scares me to think about it.

Anonymous said...

Wow Chloe! I got my glasses in grade 8 too! The first frames I ever picked out for myself (instead of getting stuck with because we couldn't afford to buy any) were half-price Versace, and 4 years or so later, a car ran over them. :(

Anyway...on to more deeply relevant things...

I relate to everything you are saying. I won't force you to listen to my story (:D) but I will just say thank you for sharing yours and being completely real.

I remember how different life looked when I got glasses and could actually see. It may be a daily choice to put on glasses (metaphorically speaking) but it's something I really need to start thinking about doing again.

Thanks Chloe! Enjoy your walk!

nicole addison said...

girl you have tears pouring down my face. this was incredible, i can't begin to explain how much i needed this. lots of hugs to you love.

JMay said...

This was such an awesome letter to read and at 17? WOW! My fav. part was when you wrote "to give all that I have and not expect anything in return". I just love that.

You're so sweet Chloe, I love reading your blog :-)

{The Huffakers} said...

I really needed to hear this. Thanks for being so inspired even at 17 years old. Keep being amazing.

crissy said...

Wow, Chloé! That was absolutely beautiful, and so are you!
I know how it is to put on a pair of glasses with an updated prescription--it's interesting how you don't really realize what you've been missing out on up to that point. And it really is a great metaphor for how we see our lives and ourselves. Over time your vision may skew, but it is so gradual that you just don't notice. It's always nice to get a reminder to look at things differently, to put on those new glasses.
Thanks for giving me (and many others) that reminder tonight.
You are a special and wonderful person, Chloé. I'm glad to know you, even if it is only through the internet. You are awesome! :)

David and Shalynna said...

You were more put together as a seventeen year old than I am at a twenty four and a half year old, plus you writing at that age was lightyears ahead of mine currently. I'm so glad you shared that letter. It reminded me of so many important things. I'll probably read it again and again. This was a great post. My favorite thing about you and your blog is that you are so real. I love that you write what you want to write because it's YOUR blog. I feel the same way- we can all write what we want about and post what we want to on our own blogs. No need to worry about what our "readers" would think or if they'll like it because it's not their blog now is it?

Don't be so hard on yourself for spending that money on hair stuff and makeup. You are so cute- yes it is good that you didn't spend it on drugs! :)

Your new glasses are darling. Love how your eyesight history became a life long lesson. Again, thanks for sharing!

Rasha said...

Love this post, and I just got glasses 2 weeks ago and am having a hard time adjusting.

Michelle said...

wow ! that was a great letter! you were so wise at seventeen! Pretty sure mine would have been pretty terrible and silly because I wouldn't have even put any thought into it. You are an amazing person!

I always get happy to see when you have posted something new!

Rhianne said...

I loved your letter and I lvoe your glasses. I've had mine forever and my eyes keep getting worse too, bah.

Don't feel too bad about the $80, I just spent £60 on 24 polaroids - Thomas nearly went through the roof... you'll have forgotten about the money in a couple of months though :)

Sam said...

wonderful letter! and love the glasses :)

Sam said...

wonderful letter! and love the glasses :)

my name is lauren. said...

p.s. sappiest comment ever....i know. sue me....i just think you're pretty great ;).

my name is lauren. said...

i love you so much chlo!

thank you for sharing this. i thought it was beautiful....especially the fact that it came from a "just 17 year old". it's so insghtful, and i think it's so cool that your friend thought to send it to you.

i wanted you to know that even though you might feel unimpressed with yourself sometimes, i'm always impressed by you. you are are a truly beautiful person inside and out and that it so rare. i am so thankful to have you for a friend. and even though life has gotten busy and we haven't been able to really connect lately, i just wanted you to know that i'm still here whenever you need me. i may get behind on commenting sometimes, but i'm still here.

love you girl and i hope you have a great day!

signs of myself said...

You reminded me of something I forgot, when we are hard on ourselves it affects everyone. It was a good post with a lot of insight. And you are right, in trying to just write for yourself, you inspired others. Thank you

Elise Halladay said...

Chloe. If I only spent $80 on face wash/lotion/toner/cream/make up I would be EXCITED. My skin is so utterly disgusting and I discovered Clinique. Wow. I can't live without it. It seriously has turned my skin around. Bad thing is- it is extremely expensive. Especially when you are like me and have to try everything available. So don't feel bad. You are beautiful. I love the glasses too. I feel your pain with the bad eye sight stuff. My eyes are terrible too. But at least we have the option of wearing cute glasses :)

Claire Kiefer said...

That letter shows so much wisdom for a 17 year old! I am 28 now, and a high school teacher, and I'd be blown away if any of my kiddos wrote a letter like that . . . so neat that you have it now. :)

samnhal said...

It's crazy how something small like that can make us see things differently, more clearly. I think the spring does that to me a lot. It kind of makes you want to make everything good again as the blossoms start after a long dark winter. I hope that you stick with it, and I'm sure as you try to better yourself, it will effect the people around you.

Kris said...

fun pair! I've had the same pair of reading glasses for a few years now. Love em... wish I needed them more often!

Diana said...

This is why i love you. you don't judge me when i spend $80 on drugs.

Just kidding, i would never do that, unless it was some crazy prescription.

Chloe, i've said it before and i'll say it again. you are a babezilla. you can wear a potato sack and make it look sexy. h8 u with love.

kels&murr said...

i just love you! ps. LOVE the glasses!

Crazy Shenanigans said...

I like the new glasses! And you're right, at least your money wasn't on something bad or illegal!

*juli* said...

LOVE the new glasses. super cute. I'm blind as a bat without my glasses or contacts. seriously. BLIND.
You were seriously a very insightful 17 year old. I'm very impressed. Also, I'd like to get together soon. yeah? yeah.

whimsy said...

how do you still look gorgeous even in glasses?

olivia rae said...

you are the best chloe! your 17-year-old self was really insightful and i'm glad you posted this, we all need a reminder sometime. xoxoxo

Elizabeth Marie said...

Wow at 17 I promise I was not writing such amazing things. I was like MOM BUY ME SHOES.

I still say that though. Hmmm.

I'm here for you too. And I just got glasses for the first time, I hope I look as hot hot hot as YOU :)

Amy said...

Cute glasses! I remember reading that letter :) It's still very touching! I wish I could express myself like you do!

the Lovelist said...

your writing makes me happy - i love that you just say it all :)

Selma said...

first of all. love your glasses. this reminds me...i need to go find me new ones too. ;)
and well, about the $80 on make-up and hair stuff. i've had my moments. then again, i'm proudly using whatever i have and remind myself each time i do that what i'm putting on my face or in my hair or whatever cost me quite some bit so i should value each time i brush something on or stick something into my hair. haha. ;) and i do. until it's used and i have to go back to the cheap stuff. haha. but it's all worth it. until then (and it may take years for me to finish stuff) i think i'm good. ;)

love the letter too girl. :D it's quite encouraging and inspiring in its own way. :D thanks for sharing.