I've been wearing glasses since I was ten. By now you'd hope I'd be 100% used to wearing them all day every day, mostly because I can't see without the bloody things, but sometimes I get a little thrown off. However, glasses are a part of who I am. I feel permanently grateful that I live in a time and a place in which I'm able to own glasses because the world is a total mystery without them.
But sometimes I get thrown off. When I was in secondary school all I wanted was contact lenses. I didn't want to be the chubby girl with glasses anymore, and I thought that getting rid of them would instantly make me more popular, prettier, and basically have a better life. PSA: that's not a thing. Getting contact lenses absolutely did not transform my life, but I do love them.
My glasses are basically my prized possession. Without them I couldn't read. I couldn't use a computer. I couldn't go shopping, or use public transport, or have any independence. Glasses give me that. And yes, it annoys me that I can see the frames, and that I have to grope around first thing in the morning to find them, but they're a necessity, and I may as well love them, ya know?
I definitely find myself being treated differently when I'm wearing my contact lenses. People take more notice of me, and actually look me in the eye whilst I'm talking more than they ever do when I'm wearing my glasses. But that makes me angry more than flattered nowadays. It makes me angry that people can't see beyond my glasses when I'm wearing them. But, what it really shows is how genuine people are: if they're not as nice to you when you're wearing your glasses, then why do they deserve your time?
So it's not a compliment when you say 'Steph, you look so different when you're not wearing glasses, I love it'. It's a way to say that you think glasses make me look worse, and that's not really okay. I love wearing glasses and I love wearing contacts. My worth is not based on my appearance, and I'm just as valuable in myself when wearing glasses as I am when they're off.