Almost everyone knows that my eyes are ‘graded’. I started wearing glasses when I was on my first year in college. I had periodically changed my glasses because their grades have appreciated very quickly. For one, studying requires loads of readings. Also, my exposure to computers has added to the entirety of the problem.

Yes, it was a problem. My mother was the one in-charge of the daily expenses and my father for my sisters’ tuition. They both study in privately-owned universities. That said, additional expenses like eyeglasses have to be included in a tight budget. Good thing there were cheap eyeglasses available in malls, though they do not seem to be aesthetically appealing.

A 600-peso pair of eyeglasses was the first I bought. It was on sale; thus, the cheap price. My mother also wears eyeglasses so she knows which ones to pick and buy. There is the cheaper reading glasses, but mine was corrective. So we really had to spend for it. Besides, I do not change mine every month.

I started working as a student assistant as early as my freshman year. I was already earning more than 1,000 pesos per month. I usually use my salary, albeit always delayed, to augment my 50-peso daily allowance. Whenever possible, I also buy second-hand books from a shop in the mall across my university. This is where I also get my funds for my eyeglasses.

Since I was already earning some money, I just tell my mother that I need to change glasses. When I feel week-long headaches, I had my eye checked. Of course, optical shops in malls would advise that I change glasses. One time, I took the frameless type. With regular price, it comes a bit expensive for a college student. Maybe it was by luck that I always catch sales or discounted prices. Within a week, it got broken during a PE session. I had to have it replaced asap. I asked my mother, a rare moment by then, for the replacement of my lenses. From then on I have resolved not to buy the same model until I finish college.

I think I have had over six pairs of glasses in the span of four years in college. In very few occasions did I ask my mother to buy my glasses for me. When I started working full time and earning enough money, I started buying quality, still cheap, glasses. I also made a promise to my mother: that I will buy her her glasses should they need replacement. For almost five years, I have done this for her.

This is my brief story about eyeglasses. Glasses are essential to me. In the kind of work I have, seeing clearly is a must. But there is meaning in every pair that I purchase for myself and for my mother.


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