Certain friends of mine would say that it shouldn't have come as a surprise. They've been seeing the signs for quite a while now. First there was the shameful addiction to Lifetime movies and Hot in Cleveland. Then there was the crazy crocheting obsession. But none of these things made me feel - deep, deep inside - like I was getting OLD.
That feeling came when I picked up a bottle of wine to read the label and found myself pulling the bottle away from my face while squinting and rearing back my head in an effort to find that sweet spot where everything would be in focus and legible to my apparently aging and weakening eyes.
And I let out a yelp and stopped myself mid-adjustment.
Because I had just felt exactly the way people look when they struggle to read menus, instructions, ingredients on a label, etc. It had happened. This was the beginning of the end.
Soon I would be the proud owner of a collection of stylish reading glasses from the supermarket, complete with attached chains and such so that I won't lose them along with the rest of my faculties and final dregs of sanity.
I have to say it was the single most terrifyingly profound moment of aging I've ever experienced. Sure, I've felt the pangs as my baby girls have become college women and I have the bad back of a much harder-working 70-year-old woman - but I've gotten used to those.
I'm the girl who couldn't pay the eye doctor to give me a prescription so my mom would buy me what I had deemed "cool" glasses that I desperately wanted to complete my new wave high school look.
I'm the only one in my immediate family who has never needed glasses.
I can read ridiculously small type from ridiculously far away.
I don't want to be the one doing a chicken impression while I try to decide which wine to order.
But - as always - you have to look on the bright side. And in my flailing attempt to find the silver lining, this is the bright truth to which I will cling: at least I'm looking at picking up a pair of spectacles and not a package of Depends.