How I went from eyelid zero to eyelid hero.

Elena Tucker
3 min readJun 28, 2023
Photo by Axel Eres on Unsplash

Don’t you ever let other people tell you are you not good enough! I am living proof that even if you have disadvantages in your life, you can always improve your lot, a tiny bit every day, until you get in near-Olympic athlete shape. And you can up your game. All it takes is commitment.

Why, just look at me — but not too closely. I started out as one of those people whose eyelids were the weakest in the world. I came from a family of weak-eyelidded people. When it came to strong eyelids, I lost the genetic lottery. My ancestors rolled the dice, and they came up snake-eye, uh, I mean, weak eyelids. I was no match for my own pathetic eyelids! But did I give up? Sure — I totally gave up… but only for a while. But then, the unthinkable happened. I had kids — weak-eyelidded kids. I was so sad, but also motivated to do something.

This was not the legacy I wanted to leave to my grandchildren. Yes, I was a multi-millionaire, many times over. Yes, I was a philanthropist. Yes, I have a PhD and a Nobel Prize for Economics. Yes, I have my international pickleball championship winnings. Yes, I published many, many books and have 4 million followers on Twitter. Yes, I rode the coattails of my more talented parents, siblings, peers, friends and cohorts. Sure, I stole, I cheated and I lied — who hadn’t. Don’t hate the player. Hate the game. Know what I’m sayin’?

Anyway, where were we? Oh, yes! … But I still had my great shame — my weak eyelids. My children were the catalyst for the transformation that I needed — that they needed.

Every morning, upon waking at the crack of noon (I am nothing if not disciplined), I would force myself to blink 10 times in a row. I know what you’re thinking — that’s a lot of blinking, even before I had our housemaid Helga bring me my morning cappuccino. Thank you. No matter the weather outside. No matter if my sheets were Egyptian cotton 1,000 thread or 100 percent silk. I did not get out of bed until I blinked 10 times in a row.

After a month of that, I upped the count of blinking by two. Now I blinked 12 times in a row, and so I went on, upping my blinking rate every month. Now, several years down the road, I could lift teeny-tiny dumbbells with my eyelids (made out of Q-Tips), bench-press several ounces with them (OK, not several…

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Elena Tucker

Writer and storyteller, immigrant, wife, mom, knitter, collector of jokes, lover of cheap, sweet wine.