Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Decision And A Book

I am done with the contacts. Done, I tell you. There is no way that they are a fair test of my ability to see in monovision because they don't give me decent vision far away or near, either one. My astigmatism is too bad, I think, for them to work at all and I am not going to put myself through that shit one more moment.
I do believe I am just going to go get a new pair of glasses and be done with this situation. I cannot commit myself to an expensive surgery which may leave me with vision no better and maybe worse than I have with glasses.
So there and that's it.
I tried for eight days.

I went to lunch with Hank today and I could hardly read the damn menu. There was no place I could hold it and see the words properly. Not near and not far. Nope. Fuck it.

So okay. Have any of you ever read a book by Joshilyn Jackson? I never had but am listening to one on CD now and I can't tell if it's a really good book or if I am just fascinated by it or if the narrator, who is Ms. Jackson herself, is just incredibly talented.
It's got my attention. Too much of it.
It's called Backseat Saints and it's about a woman in a relationship with a man who, to put it bluntly, beats the shit out of her.
Now I've never been in that situation myself. My "issues" do not include being attracted to men who might do this. I went out with a guy once who hit me ONCE and that was it. Out of there.
And if any of my good friends has ever been in this situation, they never shared it with me although I deeply suspect that one of my friends (now deceased) may have been.
And so, this is a subject I really don't know much about beyond what I learned in nursing school and have read about. It is so very easy to think that the solution to domestic violence is to simply leave, although intellectually, I know that's a hell of a lot easier to say than to do. A hell of a lot easier. And I even understand some of the reasons why.

But listening to this book has been an eye-opener and it's a page-turner (or, if you're listening, a keep-goinger). The writing is a bit...lush...but it works very well in this story. Sometimes I think an editor should have perhaps stepped in with a red pen but really? Who am I to say that?

Okay. That's all. Just wondering if any of you have read any of this author's books (And how southern is the name Joshilyn? Was she named after her daddy? I do not know but I sort of hope so.) I would be tempted to read another. This is not Great Literature but it's a good story and there is certainly a voice to it and as such, I am enjoying it a great deal, albeit the subject matter which is painful and hard to fathom but which I know is as real as can be and as mostly untalked about as the sexual abuse of children.

And now I'm going to go make some SHAKE AND BAKE PORK CHOPS and no, I do not need any help, and also sweet potatoes and there are gorgeous greens from the garden soaking in the sink which shall be our salad. And don't you laugh at Shake and Bake pork chops. They are delicious and don't be a damn snob.

It's been a good day and I'm damn glad I have taken the contacts out and admitted that this is not working out for me although I gave it a fair try and am not sorry that I did.

I am grateful that my man has never once threatened in any way to raise a hand to me in violence and quite frankly, I beat myself up enough as it is and do not need to do so with sticking lenses in my eyes which only make my vision worse.


  1. I've got a sister-in-law named Joycelyn who was born in Arkansas. Sort of close to Joshilyn. I've never been hit but do know women who have been.

  2. I've never heard of her before but will check her out. I had never been with men who hit me either. That is until my very last relationship. I left as soon as the opportunity presented itself and would never in a million years consider going back. I suppose I was so traumatized that I never even considered another relationship. That was 15 years ago. I don't understand staying with someone who hits you, but I do understand the fear that might keep one there.

    I didn't want to say anything about the contacts earlier but I had to give them up about 5-6 years ago. The thing with the surgery is that I've known people who after surgery have the problem you had with the menu permanently. I've accepted I'll wear glasses from now on and it's alright. Of course, like you, I'd rather not have them, but such is life and aging.

  3. I love these last few posts (and I may be the only person who gets your Shake-N-Bake joke. Coffee came out my nose from too much laughing).

    About the serious stuff, you are spot on, too.

  4. I have not read Joshilyn's books. It sounds like a made up name to me. But then there are a lot of those.

    I think you are being wise about the surgery - I've got an astigmatism which makes the contacts a little more difficult but I'm ok with them but can't see as well as with glasses. I don't think the surgery would be any better and would require non-dollar store reading glasses anyway so what's the point?

    I used to have to deal with a lot of unwanted touching by men, but funny - none ever hit me (except my brothers when I was a kid). My sister-in-law had 2 husbands who beat her but I'm not surprised. She could be incredibly annoying and once, during an argument, asked me in a "dare ya" kind of way, if I was going to hit her. My response was "Why the hell would I hit you?" But if that's what she did, is it any wonder that a couple men took her up on it? Not to blame the victim, but please - try not to make it so easy.

  5. I would never have been able to put one on my eye so I think you tried valiantly. The whole idea freaks me out.

  6. I didn't want to help you with your damn pork chops anyway ;) I'm glad you got rid of those damn contacts.

    Did you tell Jessie I wasn't crazy yet?

    How do you make greens? Just sautee them?

  7. Dude you should totally get those glasses that Joel Grey and Rita Moreno and Penn Jillette wear. The Superfocus glasses.

    You would look adorable in those!

  8. Ugh I hate contacts. I feel ya. I tried so many times to get contacts to work with my astigmatism and they JUST WON'T. I'm spoiled from wearing glasses since younger than 7 years old - my eyesight has nearly always been crystal sharp as a result and DAYUM aren't we lucky to live in an age with optical corrections of various sorts?

    You know, as I'm frantically packing to take off to Azerbaijan, I 2nd day aired electrical adapters and the BB King autobiography you spoke so highly of. BB's going to Azerbaijan! (Well, he's probably already been there. He gets around.)

  9. My mother's mantra, one of many, was: 'he hurts most those he loves the most'. It continues to puzzle me. The notion has a slightly masochistic ring, don't you think? It helps me to make sense of why some women (and maybe men, too) might stay on, or leave and then go back to their abusive partners.

    The book sounds intriguing. And I'm with you about the contacts. Why not wear glasses?

  10. The book sounds good -- I worked for a time in college on the Domestic Abuse Hotline, and while I went through the extensive training to do so, I cringe now to think that I actually talked on the phone to grown women whose husbands were beating them. I remember how these conversations were like scripts -- they said EVERYTHING that we had been told they would say. I can't imagine that I helped them as I was a privileged twenty-one year old, but it opened my eyes very, very wide.

  11. I've never heard of Joshilyn Jackson. That IS quite a name.

    And "Amen!" on Shake & Bake. I used to use S&B all the time when I was younger and I loved it!

  12. It just hit me that I have read a Joshilyn Jackson novel, Between Georgia, and I liked the writing very much. She knows her way around a sentence.

  13. Ah well, you tried the contacts and life is just too short to put up with that crap. I've not read Joshilyn Jackson, but now I've put her on my library list.

  14. Hi. the book, don't know of it, but am intrigued. Once had a contact torn in two stuck up in my eyelid for eleven hours, till my daughter, who is a nurse could come home and fish it out for me. I would love to give up these glasses too, but am still waiting for them to invent a pair of contacts that don't migrate all over the place. Enjoyed your post.

  15. I was kind of put off by the domestic violence in "Backseat Saints" - it seemed like it was treated almost cavalierly. But maybe that's just me.

    I liked her book "Gods in Alabama" the best. She's written a couple of others - "Between, Georgia" and "The Girl Who Stopped Swimming" which were pretty good. And she's got a new one, "A Grown-Up Kind of Pretty", which just came out.

    Oh, and she's got a blog, too, if you're interested.

  16. Kristin- And it is pronounced Jos-o-lyn or Joyce-lynn?

    Rubye Jack- Damn. I am so sorry you were in a relationship like that. I am so sorry it put you off relationships for all this time. That is just NOT RIGHT!
    I wish I could make it all better. I can't, though, can I?
    Glasses are fine. We can see through them.

    Pamela- Yes. I will never use Shake and Bake that I don't hear "And I haylped!" in my head. Said just like that.

    Jeannie- I wonder why she felt as if she deserved to be hit. I am quite certain she wasn't born with that idea.

    ellen abbott- Oh, hell. I can do it. I just do not care to any more.

    SJ- Jessie now knows you are not crazy. These were just greens for salad. Lettuces, arugula, etc.

    Ms. Fleur- So do you!

    Omgrrrl- I think I'd look like a dork. Okay, more of a dork than I already look like. Plus- you gotta fool with those things. Now if they'd GIVE me a pair...

    NOLA- I'm with you on being grateful for good optics.
    I hope you love BB as much as I do.

    Elisabeth- That's a bullshit philosophy in my book. The more I love someone, the greater lengths I will go to NOT to hurt them.

    Elizabeth- There is nothing wrong with having our eyes widened. And you never know- you may really have helped someone.

    Steve Reed- Shake and Bake is awesome! I will stand by that, too!

    Pamela- I'm glad you said that! Thanks.
    I will read more of her books.

    Lora- I think you will like her. I do.

    Wrinkling Daily- AGGGHHH!!!
    Your poor eyeball!

    rockygrace- I know. But in a way, it showed how the equation works in such a relationship. I checked out her blog- it's a good one! Thanks.

  17. It's spelled Joscelyn and it's pronounced Joh-sa-lyn (

  18. Glasses= fashion accessory.
    Boo on those contacts.

    In L.A. people say "shake and bake" when it's super hot and they're superstitiously connecting the heat with earthquakes. I'd rather have pork chops.

  19. I'm interested in reading the book, although I've not heard of the author before. Domestic violence is absolutely horrific, and no matter what anyone says about it, there are no excuses for one partner to physically abuse the other one. Ever.

  20. Kristin- Okay.
    Makes sense.

    Denise- And as the young stoners say, "wake and bake." Haha!

    Angie- Oh. I agree, babe. Yes I do.

  21. I read God's in Alabama by her years ago and I remember loving it.


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