When my siblings and I were much younger and meaner, we used to get a laugh out of terrifying a little neighbor boy named Bryce. I don’t even remember all the ways we used his fear for our own personal gain, but I do remember that anytime we threatened The Sheetrock might get him, he was putty in our hands. Who would have ever guessed his monsters would come back to haunt me?
It seems things started innocently enough; someone had been working on the drywall mudding, and Bryce was headed to the basement and about to get himself in a royal mess. So we called after him, “Don’t go downstairs.. you’ll bump into the sheetrock!” His fearful response was so comical — at least to a bunch of pre-adolescents — that the joke all summer was to use his misunderstanding to our advantage.
Fast forward two decades. I was leaning over the bathroom sink trying to see what in the world got stuck in my eye. Thinking maybe I’d torn a contact, I took it out to examine it, only to feel like someone had just given my cornea a spice rub. So I pulled out the other contact, buried them both in solution, and made a bee-line for the Optometrist. Dr. Bean said I’d been exposed to some allergen that got stuck on the front of my contacts, which in turn gave me hives under my eyelids. With my contacts out, the bumps grated against my eyes, multiplying my irritation. With my contacts in, my allergen would build up on the lenses and make the bumps worse. So he prescribed a month of daily disposables and antihistamine / mast cell blocking eyedrops, and advised me to identify my allergen and stay clear of it. While I didn’t figure out at that time what had been bothering me, surely enough, the irritation stopped.
Until I ran into my allergen again a year later.
Winter months are slow for construction workers, and with the economy as it is, my husband is home full time, making use of the break by fixing up the basement. Which means The Sheetrock is everywhere. Its dust is floating through the air making ghostly ‘orbs’ appear in our flash photos… collecting on the TV and piano so thick you could leave spooky messages before dusting them off every day… and apparently it’s getting embedded in my contacts too.
Karma really can be a
#$!@& jerk … can’t it? Particularly when I’ve been one myself. Sorry Bryce.