My Last Name Predicted My Facial "Flaw"

It's called "ptosis" and it's a sorta-kinda-squinty-lazy eye.
Publish date:
October 18, 2013
health, eyes, paris hilton, last names

You can usually find Danielle over on our sister site, xoVain, where writes awesome hair tutorials and suggests way chill bath time playlists.

It never occurred to me to Google my last name. I had always assumed it had something to do with the word "guerra," which means war, but it turns out that "guercio," translated regionally to the Kingdom of Naples means “one eyed” or “cross eyed," and it just so happens that I, Danielle Guercio, have a sorta-kinda-squinty-lazy eye.

Alle discussed how we are all somewhat mutants, and I must say, hers are pretty, well... pretty! Mine is decidedly less flattering, but goes generally unnoticed. I remember my father telling me that when I was a baby they thought I had amblyopia, or a lazy eye, but the optometrist found it so slight that correction was useless, or so I was told.

I never wore glasses until I was older, and staring at photos of yourself online only came about when I was around 17 and Myspace was just starting out, so I never really knew about it or noticed it too much before then. One not-so-great side of social media is all the crappy photos that people put up of you. My mom, for one, always takes the worst damned pictures of me! Same for my boyfriend -- being a bartender and constantly getting asked to take peoples' photos has desensitized him from actually trying to take a good one. Jerk!

It wasn’t until the Instagram days, where myself and my cousins, also Guercios, starting posting throwbacks, and hashtagging our last name. Upon clicking this tag, I discovered Gue Pequeno, the Italian rapper with a VERY squinty eye. In his case, it is ptosis, or a drooping eyelid.

It was quite the ironic way to find out what my last name meant. I don’t think I have amblyopia, which is the medical term for a lazy eye, I think I too have a slight case of ptosis. My right eye is slightly more closed than the left, and if I tilt my face to the left in photos, it is even more pronounced, appearing way smaller than the other eye at that perspective. A too-wide smile? More squinty eye. Though I notice this "flaw," I am not really too hung up on it.

Luckily for me, Paris Hilton is not the only person of interest that has ptosis. There are some other DOPE people that also have this facial deformity. Tegan Quinn, of Tegan and Sara is a pretty well known example, she even has a video about ptosis:

I’m sure it is more pronounced considering she has a twin sister who doesn’t have it, but it doesn't stop her from being cute or successful!

One of my favorite humans ever, Sir Diplodocus, Florida’s finest, also has ptosis, and his biggest problem is having women literally throw themselves, chocha-first, in his direction.

I wonder if these people are like me, in which their ptosis is not constantly present. It seems to be exacerbated by dry eyes, intoxication or hangovers, bad lighting, and general tiredness. So if you see my eye a’squintin', you might not wanna mess with me that day, chances are I am in rare form. Whenever our country’s fabulous new healthcare system kicks in, I will be asking my doctor of optometry at the landmark Moscot store if a new prescription will help with this problem.

Either way you look at it, life has brought me to a place where I don’t stare in the mirror and wish my eye to open more, and thankfully enough, it is not a constant problem. I will say I found it rather telling that my last name correlates with something in my appearance. Somewhere in Naples of Sicily, there is a village with a bunch of fellow Guercios who also squint. One day I will find them and go drink wine with them, thus exacerbating and strengthening our bond.

See more from Danielle here!