Are you a “funny girl” the person with witty repartee and an easy laugh at most situations? I am. I crack myself up even, granted I have been told only a fool laughs at her own jokes. Well….color me a fool.
I was born with Duanes Syndrome. It is a very rare eye syndrome that one of your eyes does not have the nerve endings attached to it….so, in essence, it will not turn one way. When you are a child – you do not have the control you will as an adult to compensate for it….so….you will be called “cross-eyed”. Don't cry for me yet. I also had a beautiful smile, clear skin, thick blonde hair, and had big green eyes. The pre-requisite in the 80s to be popular….but until I got to the point of pretty or cute being a trump over anything else….I had cross-eyes. It was what everyone saw first.
One kid threw a pinecone at me because I didn't have peripheral vision. Scratched my face up pretty well. Playground was the worst…..kids are terrible and chant and make fun of you. Until I had it down I would walk into walls that I forgot were there ( I still do after a glass of wine). My mom tells a particularly chilling story of looking at her brand new baby girl, and when she saw my eyes the fear that went over her that I was not “normal”. Any new, young mothers response, I am sure.
What came out of it was that I became funny. I laughed easily, told jokes, got the best grades in class….read several grades above my level, and made sure that EVERYTHING ELSE about me was above the standard….so what was a silly eye defect? Nothing. I did this on my own, it was instinct. I knew I wanted more, and there was no cure (still isn't) for my syndrome, so, sink or swim. This funny girl swam. I was “most infectious laugh” or “prettiest smile”. I was always smiling, and fun to be around. I like to think I still am.
I guess, as I get closer to having babies, I start to think how my kids will deal with having anything different about them, and then I realize they have me as a role model. I got this “defect” thing down. I consider myself successful, happy, and in general living what I consider an above average life in just about every area.
As I have grown older, my easy nature, love of laughter has made me a quickly loved companion to friends and colleagues. Periodically I will get the random person who cannot handle how easy it is for me to laugh, create relationships, and be accepted into most circles. That is envy and it is ugly stuff so those are the people I stay away from…I am serious…the moment I see that type of behavior – I am DONE. Invitations dry up to our events, and I slowly back away until they are in the distance. I call it the “friendship fade” because I don't want to hurt them…I just don't want them around me and my family and friends.
I think sometimes, that life isn't THAT hard, and I have had my hardships…but learning very early to bend, go with the flow, and have a good attitude, smile, and laugh for everyone MAKES my life a lot easier than other more stiff and stringent individuals. These are some other things I think about as I get closer to the twins due date: Teaching my kids what an easy attitude, a quick smile, and an ability to be happy with what they have will get them: A Joyful Life!
Another item I think about it this: My defect is on the outside. I know a lot of people who have theirs in the inside. In their heart, or character. I will take a “funny-eyeball” as I call it, over that ANYDAY!
So, happy Spring and let your Funny-Eyeball be part of who you are…..it is okay. No one is perfect!!
What is Duane syndrome?
Duane syndrome (DS) is a rare, congenital (present from birth) eye movement disorder. Most patients are diagnosed by the age of 10 years and DS is more common in girls (60 percent of the cases) than boys (40 percent of the cases).
DS is a miswiring of the eye muscles, causing some eye muscles to contract when they shouldn't and other eye muscles not to contract when they should. People with DS have a limited (and sometimes absent) ability to move the eye outward toward the ear (abduction) and, in most cases, a limited ability to move the eye inward toward the nose (adduction).