Monday, September 25, 2017
“Mirror, mirror on the wall…” We all know the rest of the line. Unlike the evil queen, I would not like my mirror to tell me the truth. Hell on a good day I never look in a mirror. I usually don’t like the visage looking back at me. On any given day it will either show me as being fat, unkempt or a total mess.
I fought with the reflection in the mirror all of my life. It is for this same reason that I hate to have my picture taken. I don’t like what is reflected back at me. As someone who has fought with my weight my whole life, the mirror is a kind of hell to avoid. I don’t need something else to tell me what I know, what the world tells me and what I feel I can’t change.
I also avoid the looking glass when I am in the throes of a deep depression. No need to see proof that I just haven’t cared to brush my hair or take a bath, you know because why does it all matter? On the flip side when mania is ruling my emotional house, I hate seeing the wild-eyed harridan that can’t seem to slow down. If in fact, I can take the time to stop and look.
Every once in a great while I will catch my reflection out of the corner of my eye as I am leaving the bathroom. Usually, I keep walking, but then there are those days I face my fears and take a glimpse. What grabbed my attention is that on this given day, I study myself and find things that I like about myself. “Hey, today my hair is actually en pointe.” My face seems lit with an inner glow, I think I might go find my makeup back and make an attempt to look human.
As I have grown older, I have found that my old demons don’t seem to bother as much as when I was younger. I have learned to accept that I will never be a size two or probably even a twelve. I have learned to do the best I can and not sweat the stuff I can’t fix. I look at the fifty-year-old woman and see the frown lines around my mouth and between my eyebrows and think of all the ways I could have prevented them. I also know that there is no time machine to take me back to repair the damage. I have to accept that.
I see in that wicked old mirror, a woman who has lived her life. Maybe not easily but she survived. I see the inner strength that got me through the rough times. Mixed in with the frown lines are the fine lines at the corners of my eyes that speak of the smile hidden in my eyes. I like the woman I see most days now. I have finally come to terms with my myriad illness’. I have learned to look for signs in my mirror to give me warning of health issues that are blossoming. I have come to think of my mirror as an impartial second party; A witness to the tolls that illness has taken on my body.
Am I still overweight? Yes. Do I look like hell when Depression has its hooks into me? Yes. Do I look like a wild woman on a rampage when I go manic? Of course, I do. I have learned to accept those facets of myself, and yes, I still avoid the mirror when they appear but I have also learned the answer to the question “who is the fairest of them all?” I may not be the fairest but I am me.
Who do you see in your mirror? Let me know in the comments. Remember no matter the reflection in the mirror, to always love fully and laugh often.