Wednesday, July 17, 2013

The Pirate Girl

Jordan has had a squint since she was born. It hasn't been bad but she hasn't really out grown it. It is one of the reasons why JED are on a strict no-TV, no electronic device diet on the weekdays. While it has prevented the squint from getting worse, it hasn't really gotten any better either. In fact, as she becomes more competent with reading, the speeds at which both eyes read are markedly different.

So at her recent visit, we go every four months, the ophthalmologist says Jordan needs to be patched. Her stronger eye needs to be patched for at least an hour a day, allowing her lazier eye no choice but to do all the work. The hope is that then, her lazier eye will get stronger.

It's a hard thing to do. To get her patched. It's uncomfortable and it's hot and it's inhibits her greatly.

To make it easier, we tell her she gets to be a pirate girl; that she needs to look like a pirate so that her eye can get stronger.

It helps that their current favourite book is about pirates and the girl in the book, Tilda wears a pirate patch and has no qualms playing with the pirate boy. (On the side, it's a great book about teaching kids to not judge others because they are different; a lesson no one is ever too young to learn) 

So she dons the patch but keeps trying to pull it off, sort of like a puppy because it gets in her way and she is used to 3D binocular vision. We're starting off slow. We're giving her a lot of encouragement so that she gets used to it before we let her use it in school as recommended.

Part of me aches because she struggles with it and is physically uncomfortable with it on. But the other part of me knows that shes young and she'll adapt; she'll get used to it as long as we don't make too big a fuss about it. And to make it easier for her to bear, I've joined her in patching my eye for the duration that she has the patch on. It helps me understand what she is complaining about and helps me help her deal with it. And when she sees Mommy put it on quite gamely and do what she is doing,  she doesn't complain as much and is much more willing to try.

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  1. For a start, it is not easy to convinced the little one to wear it. For how many hours a day, has the patching been prescribed? K has been wearing a patch since Oct last year, was rather difficult at the beginning to get him to put it on, as he is rather self-conscious. But he has since gotten used to his patching sessions. He is prescribed the patch up to 3 hours a day, so we mostly do it at home in the evenings.

  2. Thanks Rachel! I know she'll get used to it. It's just the discomfort thing.