I hate my eyeballs.
Maybe that’s a little harsh, out of context. I mean, I guess I don’t, not really: they help me to read and write and I like the lovely things my vision allows me to do. I like the concept of eyes. But the eyeballs themselves, well.
This time of year, every year, they change. No longer are they happy little vitreous globes living inside my face; instead they become squishy jerks, (I’m sure) growing microscopic barbs that reach out to hook airborne pollen like cruel Velcro. I’m pretty sure they hate me. I thought we were friends.
Sure, I mean, they’re not in this alone. My sinuses get in on the action, deciding that all that hydrating water I keep drinking should in fact be flung far from my person, leaving my nose red and rough and raw. And my throat adopts the texture of finely spun glass, dry and parched and scratchy, demanding more water again.
But it’s the eyes, man. They’re the harbingers. They’re the bad kids from the fifties with the switchblades and the leather jackets. They’re the shit disturbers, coaxing the rest of my unassuming body into waging war on my poor brain, who just wants sleep and to not sneeze until it is dizzy. The eyes are how I know the Annual Allergy Apocalypse has begun: watering til I look like I’m crying, itching until I mash my knuckles into them. And all that mascara being ground in can’t be helping, I’m sure.
And this is with the help of modern pharmacology.
So if you see me in the next month or two, and I look like I’m rocking the world’s biggest hangover, rest assured my eyes drooping at half-mast is only because to open them fully is to invite disaster, and not because I am still half-drunk from the night before. Come to think of it, maybe I should adopt that old hangover stand-by of sunglasses worn inside, if only so concerned strangers stop asking me why I’m crying all the time.
At least my husband understands: he brought me these the other day. For this is no wussy cold, no silly flirtation with pollen, but a FULL-ON BATTLE which requires BADASS ARTILLERY. There are only ten of these tissues; he cautioned that they are to be used for only the mightiest of facial explosions. I’m sure I can ration them out… I just need to breathe through my mouth, keep my head still, not bend over OR lie down —