Bifocals

“Have I reached that age, Doc?”, I asked the Optometrist towards the end of my last eye appointment. I was past due for new glasses and I had a gut feeling I was going to need bifocals.

“You’re kind of right on the edge.”, he said sensing my indignant resignation. “I think you would benefit from them today. But, you could get by a few more months before you really need them. Tell you what, I’ll write the prescription both ways. That way, if you decide you don’t want them right now, you can always get the bifocals when you are ready.”

I’m sure the doctor sees people like me everyday. He tells us we need bifocals. But he knows we are not quite ready for bifocals. We are not quite ready to face that truth. The truths we must admit to ourselves are often the hardest we have to tell. He knows that some people, when on the edge, will choose the option that is easier to face and not get the bifocals. Then, they will get their new glasses, realize that they can’t read anything smaller than twelve point type unless it is held at arm’s length, and thus be forced to face the truth. Then, and only then, will they be ready for them, despite the fact they already needed them.

I’m ready now.

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