Thursday, 29 November 2012

The Woman in the Mirror

When I was a child I used to talk to a woman in the mirror.

We were best friends. We shared so many things; we combed our hair together; we even did our first make up together, when I secretly took my mother’s make up box, and we tried all shades and colours before she could catch us.

We spent a lot of time together telling each other stories. I used to tell her what I would like to be when I grew up; it was one of my favourite pastimes. We really liked each other. And she was with me all the time, because mum gave me one of her old powder compacts — there was a mirror in it, so I could take her with me everywhere.

As I grew older, many other friends came into my life: girlfriends, boyfriends, and “the boyfriends”. Life became very busy; there were so many things out there to discover, to talk about, to engage with.

As time passed, the women in the mirror became ever more a blurred image, until the day she finally disappeared, and I completely forgot about her existence.

Career took place; serious relationships took place; serious commitments took place; serious decisions took place. Life took charge like a river, and I was going with the flow.

I was no longer a girl when one day after a shower I had a fright! I looked at the mirror, and I saw a woman! I didn’t recognize her at first. She was not old, but she looked weary, tired; she had a very sad look in her eyes. In fact, I felt very uncomfortable looking at her, and my first reaction was to run away. But she looked back at me; she looked into my eyes; and a chilled feeling went through my whole body, up and down my spine, and I knew I had to face her.

I tried to start a conversation, and said “Hi, who are you?” She looked back at me, a bit surprised, and in a calm and sad voice replied, “Don’t you know me anymore?” I was confused. “Did I know you before?” She evinced a shy smile and looked at me intensely. “We used to be best friends,” she said. “Really? I don’t rememb… Oh — OMG, yes, I do remember you now! It was a long time ago. Yes, you’re right! But — you looked very different back then”. “Yes, indeed, I was very different,” she replied.

“What happened to you?” I asked. She looked deeply into my eyes and said, “I’m not loved any more. I’ve been forgotten by the one I loved most. In the past years everyone else became more important than I was. Before, we were great companions, we shared many things, we told our secrets to each other, and we had such plans for our future; our love for each other was our strength, and there was nothing more important than that. We knew we were beautiful, and we were very happy. Everything around us was worth living because we were together, because we were one.”

I could understand perfectly what she was saying. I couldn’t recall the time I felt such love anymore; I was, myself, very lonely, lost, trying to find where the river of life was taking me. I’d lost control; I felt I was being taken somewhere I didn’t know. I wasn’t happy, but didn’t know what to do or who could help me. In fact, I was quite scared.

I looked back at her and asked, “Can I help you?” She looked at me for a long, while — then she finally opened up with a big smile and said, “Yes! Actually, the truth is that you’re the only one who can help me. I’ve been waiting for you all these years. I felt desperate sometimes, but deep down I had the hope that one day you’d come back. Yes, you can help me. Give me your love, and I’ll be able to be what I was meant to be — that beautiful woman you used to talk to when you were a child, the one you admired, the wise woman who shared all your secrets, the one you believed was the most wonderful and loving, the one who could spread and share love wherever you took her — the one with whom you enjoyed the happiest days in your life. ”

I felt overwhelmed. I felt sad, but at the same time there was a tiny sense of joy deep inside me. Maybe it was the hope that I could again feel everything she was telling me. Although I was confused, and didn’t really know how to get started, I felt happy to know that my love could help her, the woman in the mirror.

I made her a promise that I would love, cherish, respect, and admire her every single day of my life. I gave her my word that I would always be with her. I don’t need to have the powder compact with me, as when I was a child, but I reassured her that I will always keep her present.

Since that day, there’s a routine I follow every morning: I get up and go to meet her at the mirror. She’s already there, waiting for me. We both smile at each other and I greet her: “Good morning, Darling! You’re looking wonderful today — even better than yesterday. I’m always so happy to see you. Look after yourself, and don’t forget, I love you. Have a great day!”

Since then, the woman in the mirror has blossomed. And it’s visible that she’s happy, she’s whole, she’s wonderful! All the love I give to her, I receive in return, multiplied. Finding her again really changed my life for the best.

She told me she will be 48 next month, and I can tell you, she looks gorgeous! I love her dearly!

PS Image by Francoise Nielly