Alex (yakshaver) wrote,

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Stared at by Small Children

While everyone at MEEI assures me my second surgery went perfectly normally — and I'm certainly seeing out of my right eye far better than I'd hoped — there's definitely one quite noticeable difference: the surgeon nicked a blood vessel in my right eye (which didn't happen with my left), causing the white of my eye to flush pink. I'm assured this is normal.

They sent me home from my one-day followup with dark glasses, so I didn't scare anyone on my way home. But I had the lenses in a pair of old glasses replaced with clear polycarbonate, which I've been wearing around the house. And when I had to go out yesterday, I just wore those.

I suppose I didn't think people would notice — it had, after all, been necessary for me to make myself a bit bug-eyed to get the photo above. And perhaps people for the most part didn't. But there was a little girl in the grocery store yesterday who kept turning to look up at me. (The operative word here of course being up. Someone seeing your face from your thigh level is going to see a lot more of the whites of your eyes.)

And we kept running into each other: her grown-up and I were going opposite directions down an aisle when I first saw them — and we managed to cross each-other's paths a half-dozen more times in the course of 15 minutes.

It was clear she'd been taught it's not polite to stare — but she couldn't help herself, and kept turning to peer up into my face for three or four seconds before remembering her manners. After initially thinking Oh, crap; now I'm frightening small children, I realized she wasn't so much frightened as curious — and that to the extent she was afraid, it was probably fear that her curiosity would get her in trouble.

When I was younger, before Americans had been conditioned to consider an adult male taking an interest in an unknown child to be a pervert til proven otherwise, I might have spoken to her adult, explained that I'd just had eye surgery, which the child seemed interested in, and expressed willingness to assuage her curiosity. Instead, I kept feeling slightly embarrassed and finding a different direction to head off in.

If I go out today, I think I'll take the easy way out and wear the dark glasses.
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