What a shame I’m not a child today. Students have so many opportunities for education. Along with traditional public school, some states and provinces allow home schooling. Private schools also provide those parents with the means to give their kids a superior education.
Choices were limited fifty years ago when I was young. Nobody was allowed to home school kids. I attended public school for two years before being exiled to a residential school for six painful years. Then I was mainstreamed into public school for my junior high and high school years.
During all that time, having proper magnifying glasses was a perennial problem. The weak ones my parents bought at the discount stores were useless. They bought me a pair of goggles with magnifiers in them but they were too heavy to wear. I also hated having to switch pairs of glasses whenever I wanted to write or look at the teacher. The bar magnifying glasses at the blind school didn’t work for me either since it only made the print taller.
Even in junior high school, I had difficulties with visual aids. My parents bought me a monocular to read the blackboard with but I had to hold two weak magnifying glasses together to read textbooks. Mom did buy me a specially-made strong magnifying glass but it was heavy. A kind teacher in the graphic arts class gave me a plastic magnifier but some sighted kid stole it, and my monocular, out of my locker.
The high school also had a CCTV reader in the library. It worked well but I had problems with students pestering me as I worked. It also gave me a headache if I used it too much.
Once I had money from working and could buy my own visual aids, I was able to read whatever I wanted. Even so, all that peering through small lenses took a toll on my weak left eye. It hemorrhaged in 1988 and my supervisor removed all reading duties from my job.
Optical magnifying glasses served me well for decades. Then in 2009, a scar on my cornea distorted my sight. Even a twelve-power glass wasn’t helpful. The Pebble-mini solved many problems regarding reading for me. Until my vision gets too poor to use it, I’ll treasure my electronic magnifier.
I’ve written in greater detail about the difficulties my poor vision has caused me in When a Man Loves a Rabbit: Learning and Living With Bunnies as well as Deliverance from Jericho: Six Years in a Blind School. Visit Bruce Atchison’s books to learn more about them. How I Was Razed is my newly-published book. Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers stock the paperback and e-book versions of this inspiring story of God’s providence.