Monday, August 01, 2005

Don't Ask, Don't Tell

Hello, F.O.T.E.'s!
Well, I've got such a ton of gnus for you, but I wanted to just pop on here for a minute and let you know about what we did today...
I've been needing new contact lenses for *some* time now, but with The Ram gone, plus being an hour+ from the optometrist, I had put off taking my lil "von Trapp" entourage in get them. ("The hills are ali-i-i-i-i-ve...")
Well, I decided last weekend that MONDAY (today) was The Day. So, I bit the bullet and loaded up my troops. The drive gave me opportunity to instruct the children about the behavior I expected from them. Words such as "duty, family honor, courage" were involved in that conversation, along with words like "punishment, serious, silence, immediate, obedience, and 'small reward' IF..."
The Ram has always purported that if you take all the children into a place of business, you get more prompt (if not altogether friendly) service. I was about to test his hypothesis...
By the time I had filled out the requisite paperwork, the pre-examination person was ready to puff air into my eyes, test for colorblindness and see if I could tell "which bullseye pops out at you." (That last one was new to me. I'm not sure that I passed. :-) I had escorted the children to the toy box and they had settled in.
The first thing Pre-Exam Girl did was take my blood pressure. Lest I frighten you, I won't tell you the numbers--just that they were high for me. The Girl didn't flinch, so I imagine she understood my high level of anxiety. I explained that we'd never tried this before--with me being incapacitated during the exam and Carnival in charge of keeping the peace. Well, a few puffs, colors and bullseyes later, the Girl stood up and asked me to go take out the lenses I'd worn in. Uh...OK...
I went and took those out then sat in a chair near the toy box and listened for clues that those blurry spots were, indeed, my children. Before my chair cushion had time to warm up, the Dr. was leading me into The Big, Blue Chair. Horror of horrors, he shut the door behind him--my progeny on the other side. I felt my blood pressure click up another point.
I have always had a hard time keeping a straight face when the eye doctor examines my eyes with his penlight, right up close. When I was a kid, the optometrist we went to was a smoker. When he turned off all the lights and walked right into my face with his light shining and his breath coming in hoarse rasps like an obscene phonecaller, I always suffered from a fit of giggles. Now as a grown up, I always try to psyche myself up before a visit. I tell myself that it's really NOT funny. It's a very serious eye exam and I will NOT giggle this time. For the past several years, I have managed to get through the inspection with only a grin. Today, with the distraction of the children in the other room, I thought surely I would not be attacked by The Humor Monster. Evidently, the Humor Monster is superior in strength to the Fear of Being Embarrassed by My Toddler, and I caught myself about to snicker. Again, I forced myself to act dignified, and made it through the exam with only the hint of a smile. I've always wanted to ask the Dr. (I see a different one now than the Smoking Eye Doc) if anyone else laughs in his face. But I never have.
I'll admit that I was hoping the doctor might have a "don't ask, don't tell" policy regarding the length of time a patient has worn the same pair of disposable contacts. I will also admit that I carefully phrased my answer. His question was, "How often do you change your contacts?" My scientifically formulated answer was, "GENERALLY every 6-8 weeks." (Notice, he did *not* ask how long I'd been wearing *that particular* pair of contacts...and notice further that I said *generally*.) Two things I'm not likely to share with you: my weight and the length of time I wore those last contacts. ;-) Anyway, the dreaded question/answer was over and the Dr. was writing out my prescription. Before I knew it, the assistant was bringing me a brand, spanking new pair of lenses.
I know you're wondering about the children's behavior during my heart-pounding exam. I am very happy to report that the conversation in the van after the visit was replete with "proud, cooperative, quiet, good job, and small reward." (please, cut me some slack--we almost never do material rewards for good behavior, but this was a momentous, not to mention stressful, occasion, LOL)
As for The Ram's Hypothesis: I'll summarize this way. Time upon entering said optometrist office: 3:15 p.m. Time upon leaving said optometrist office: 4:00 p.m.
Time I spent last time we went and took only one child: 90 minutes. Hmmmm..."The hills are al-i-i-i-i-i-ve with the sound of mu-u-u-u-sic...." :-)
Well, must run put the flock to bed...y'all keep your wool dry...
The Ewe



Lisa-Anne said...

Hey sweetie pie!
This is funny, about laughing at the doc.
The last time I went to the eye doc, it was at a swanky store in the upscale mall. (my insurance covered that place, the closest one to me!) I ended up laughing for over an hour with the lady who does the preliminary tests, I got to giggling at the silly little tests, tracking flashes of light while my head was in something like a cone... :) So the doc's assistant starts laughing too, and then I got really happy somehow... like I could just *feel* the pleasure of God. It seemed like heaven and earth must all be laughing, and then I got just really tickled... and so did she... and that very nicely dressed, very professional lady and I ended up in the floor LAUGHING our heads off for nearly an hour! The Doc stuck his head in and stared, but just went back out and had a latte. :) In between laughing so hard I was able to tell her a little bit about why I'm SO happy and she was amazed to hear that God is in a good mood, and loves her very much, and wants a relationship with her! :)
anyhow, I did end up with glasses, but I never wear them. :)The Doc never said a word, even though the entire staff could hear us lauging and a whole wing of the mall... :)
thats my funny optometrist story. :)
Love ya!

Anonymous said...

I call it the Progeny Effect. It's based on the Law of Progeny Accelerated Service which states: "Speed of service is directly proportional to the number of children brought in to the place of business by the parent." This effect is potentiated by the absence of one parent.

I love ewe!
The Ram

Anonymous said...

Okay, I've tried to be patient, but I'm really growing restless for the next posting of Ewes-Gnus!!!

Hey just now when I was scanning your last entry to see if I had read it or not, I came across the phrase "Smokin' eye doctor" and it made me think of Jim Carrey in "The Mask" - like the eye doctor was really good lookin' - isn't that crazy! lol!

E's mom