I made the rather sharp turn at the intersection by my house gracefully. I looked into the rearview to reassure myself that my babies were enjoying the ride and caught a shock of grey hair by my temple staring back at me. Startled, I flicked a lock of black hair over to camouflage and turned away. Even as I did, my eyes reached over the frame of my glasses to connect with my reflection.
I drove eyes on the road and thoughts quite elsewhere. Dropping the girls off at daycare, I got in and stole a last look at myself and touched my eyelids rather reverentially before I drove off.
For years I have worn contacts. From the rigid gas permeable to the toric soft ones. From gingerly balancing the sliver of glass on my fingertips to quashing them between my index and thumb. From gently extracting the borrowed glass from my lower eyelid from sleeping in them overnight to being excessively paranoid about them, the contacts ruled my life for a decade and a half till one day I decided I was done.
Done with dry eyes. Done with lugging around bottles of contact solution and tiny cases. Done with marking them off on my essentials list when I got ready to travel. For a year now that I have been contacts free I have reveled in freedom that is as close to running barefoot on dewy grass. You know the kind don’t you?
So, the image that stared back from the rearview this morning, it reminded me of the power of promise. The promise of kohl lined eyes. The promise of being able to stay over anywhere without fear of not having a place to store my contacts. The promise of freedom even if I never used it.