Patch, Schmatch! It’s the end of a chapter!

If you’ve been with me for awhile, you know that Meredith was diagnosed with amblyopia when she was three. She was super-farsighted in her right eye, and her brain had pretty much turned off the switch in her left eye. To get her left eye working again, she started wearing a patch over her right eye.

The Patch.

This is Meredith when we first started patching. What a cute three year old! Argh!

A week or so after we started patching, her glasses came in, and she started doing this thing where she would close her eyes because she thought if she couldn’t see us, we couldn’t see her.

This is how she rebels against the eyewear.

She was a total good sport about the patching. I think she even wore the patch to school a few times, even though I promised her that I would never make her do that if it made her uncomfortable.

The Good Sport

(I found this sort of interesting. If a child approached her while she was wearing her patch, more often than not, the child would ask, “Why are you wearing a patch?” If an adult approached her, the adult would look right over her head and ask me “What’s wrong with her?” This normally took place at the grocery store by our house—the store where the ill-mannered elderly often shop. Also, they don’t sell chipotle chiles in adobo sauce there, and it drives me crazy! Anyway.)

Struggles with Zipping

(Side story: We always let Meredith choose her own frames, because we want her to be happy to wear her glasses. The frames in the above photo (better seen here) were more expensive than any other pair we’ve purchased. When I asked why, I was told that the tiny ladybugs on the nose and sides were handpainted by elderly German artisans. True story. My shoes were probably sewn by a four year old in China, and Meredith’s glasses were painted by an 80 year old in Munich. We Are The World.) There were months when we patched for six to eight hours per day. Sometimes two to four hours per day. For the past six months, we were asked to patch “for a few hours two or three times each week or so.”

Meredith, Mona, and Junie B.

This morning, Meredith had an appointment with her pediatric ophthalmologist. Her quality of vision showed no change with the sporadic patching during the past six months. Because of this, I’m pleased to report that we will no longer be patching. (Obviously, if her vision had improved, we would be happy to continue with the patching to see if the improvements would continue. However, the articles I’ve read state that improvements are seen less often after a child reaches the age of seven. We Are Average, and with 20/40 vision with her glasses on, we’ll accept Average.)


We’ve come a long way. High fives to MC’s doctor, high fives to the kind folks at Patch Pals, and high fives to Meredith for being a Super Trooper and never converting the patch into an albatross. ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

24 thoughts on “Patch, Schmatch! It’s the end of a chapter!”

  1. I cannot believe how grown up she is these days! Goodbye to the patch, and what a good attitude she has. I think it’s an indicator of an awesome kid and some awesome parents.

  2. My sister had to patch when she was in kindergarten, but there were no cute patches back then. She got to choose from “black” or “flesh”. It was definitely an albatross for her. I wasn’t so great at mentoring when I couldn’t relate, and I never needed glasses, so I had no helpful advice for my little sister. She eventually just stopped wearing the patch. I think the eye strengths were way closer than in Meredith’s case.

    Anyway, FF about 15 years to about 1995, when the malls were full of those kiosks with large pictures that looked like dots until you refocused your eyes and saw a 3-D Statue of Liberty or sailboat or something. Poor Katie stood for 20 minutes in front of one, concentrating with all her might, until I read a small note in one corner: “People with lazy eyes may not be able to see the special image.”

    After a while, I pointed it out to her.

  3. I believe that the patches did not become a albatross because of how the gorgeous child’s *thinking* parents handled it. You rock, Mr & Mrs Pudding.

    Also, what’s a chipotle? Seriously – no chipotle here…

  4. Congrats to M! I’ve been there, done that, and it’s no fun! Glad that it’s over for her and looks like she does a great job picking out frames. She’s beautiful!

  5. Congrats to M! Seriously, those are the cutest patches ever and likely the reason why she did not make it an albatross. You are rocking parents, Puddings! :)

    And, oddly enough, I am wishing I had a pair of frames with little handpainted ladybugs on them, right now.

  6. We did a run of patching too. It was not a ton of fun, but neither was it the horror show I was afraid it might be. I’m glad your patch days are over!
    Now, you showed us the cute patch photos, do you also have a collection of pre-patch photos that you now look at and think “Look at her totally closing one eye there, I can’t believe I didn’t notice it!” I know I do. Sigh.

  7. Everything about this post makes me smile. Except the grocery store with mean old people and its lack of chipotle peppers. But the rest? SMILE!!!!!!!!!!

  8. You guys are fantastic parents. Don’t ever let anyone tell you different. As I’ve told you before, you are all kinds of awesome and I very much appreciate you. Your girls are going to follow in your footsteps, I can just tell. You are a rare breed, Angela.

  9. Yes! High-fives to Meredith AND to you.

    Your story totally makes me smile. If you remember, Meredith and (my daughter) Erin were in an art class together last summer – they were both quiet, dark-haired girls with glasses. Erin also patched 4-6 hours/day, stopping (like you mentioned) around age 7. E’s now at 20/30 corrected, which is a far-sight better (ha! pun intended) than the 20/300 where she started.

    We had similar experiences with comments from adults/kids when E was patching. It amazed me sometimes how *kind* the kids were and how crass the (stereotype alert!) the mostly-older adults were. Whatever.

    We found one of E’s old patches the other day (Yes, Patch Pals ROCK!) and she put it on, looked in the mirror, and smiled. Memories. :-)

  10. I kind of want a patch they are so cute. I’d learn so many pirate jokes you’d bust a gut.

    Nevertheless, congrats on the 20/40.

  11. 20/40 is great! Maybe if you could somehow bottle the take things in stride, you could sell it on etsy. I would totally stock up on it for my 7 yr. old, she started crying about having the pledge of allegiance read over the loudspeaker. But she gets it from me, don’t tell my husband, he thinks it is from his mother…shhh. Maybe you could also sell an adult version too?

  12. HOORAY.

    My first glasses had teeny tiny pictures of Smurfette on the sides. I really, really hope they were painted elderly Germans.

  13. Back when I myself was patched, the only choice was “flesh” color. As if that’s inconspicuous. The patch was also never talked about. As if overlooking something that obvious would make it invisible. Glad to see things are handled differently these days!

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