“I realize that humans lack good mirrors. It’s so hard for anyone to show us how we look, and so hard for us to show anyone how we feel.”
― John Green, Paper Towns
Because we can’t find a place to hang the huge mirror that hung over our bed in our old home, we hang it at the end of the hallway which leads out to the main part of the house. It is not a fresh idea, but rather a borrowed one; as there was a mirror hanging there when we looked at the house the very first time.
I surround the mirror with pieces of small art and I like it.
As I walk down the hallway I can’t help but see myself, in full view; straight out of bed, after a workout or shower, ready to head into town, or in my pj’s, in the middle of the night, when I get up to let the dog out. I witness what I think is a clear view of myself.
I notice how I sometimes limp towards late evening, but walk with power after working out. I note how old and baggy some of my clothes are and how my hair looks upon waking. I mark the slight dip in my left shoulder and how I really need to drop twenty pounds. I scrutinize my refection for a few days and find I am neither happy or sad about what I see.
A few days after hanging the mirror I start to slow my steps down while waling towards it. I stare hard at my reflection, trying to discern what I am seeing; i look for clues that might tell me a bit more about what is going on deep inside of this woman, secrets I hide even from myself. Sometimes I catch a glimpse of something I don’t recognize, and I pause, giving her time to allow whatever it is to surface. I find myself looking back at her over my shoulder as I head to bed.
I bring her with me as I settle in bed with my book; her and me, and all of our secrets.
Slowly she has started to share, and slowly I am learning to listen . . .