“Here your glasses are, Ms. Perry.” Another student would have located the eyeglasses I had left someplace as I walked around the classroom and stopped to see something written on the blackboard. Constantly having to take my glasses off let me know it was time for a change.

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History says that Benjamin Franklin invented bifocals because he got tired of having to keep up with two pairs of glasses. So, he created glasses with two half lenses: the top lenses let him see objects in the distance, and the bottom half helped with reading. 

One of the first things a caregiver has to realize is that things are not as they used to be – either for you or for the person in need of your care. Because we naturally appreciate what we know and what is most comfortable, we may spend too much mental time recalling what the loved one used to be. Recalling pleasant memories is needful, but if that’s the only lens we use, it can be detrimental.

What could be more productive is to see what is directly in front of us and tell ourselves the truth about where a loved one is now in terms of their health and abilities. Wishing they were what they used to be will serve no purpose. The good thing about today’s bifocals is that there doesn’t have to be an obvious separating line between the lenses. Progressive lenses may actually be trifocal by helping you see far away, middle distance, or close up. For those who use progressive lenses, the eye can make the change from one distance to another gradually without you even knowing the change is taking place. Your brain just makes the adjustment. 

As you continue caring for others, adjust your lenses as needed. Face what is directly in front of you as you treasure the far away memories of the past; then continue to look through lenses of love and reality as you give care to others. 

🙋Your Turn: What lenses are you using these days?

Published by Ardella

I am a retired educator and a Christian Education director. My passion is teaching and writing. My book, Learning to Love Olivia, chronicles my journey in caring for my mother during her season with Alzheimer's.

2 thoughts on “PUT ON YOUR BIFOCALS

  1. Wow. I’m in awe of the caliber of your writing, which is surely a reflection of the caliber of your consciousness. I just shared this post on Facebook. I’ve only recently started back to using it, so I’ll be sure to share all of your posts going forward.


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