When I first arrived in Chicago, in the summer of 1979, my eyes felt like they wanted to split apart. Earlier, in my teens, I’d been diagnosed with exophoria (or maybe exotropia), which is the eyes not working together. I’d done “eye push-ups” and other exercises — but until that summer I never felt like I had to actively work to hold them together.
My father had just been fired from his job as a schoolteacher, in a highly publicized hearing before his school board. It was the summer between my junior and senior years at Princeton.
Today, sitting at lunch with my mom and my stepfather, I felt my eyes trying to diverge again. In the worst case, one eye would go totally rogue, but I don’t think that’ll happen!