One morning, I finished fixing my hair and make-up, looked in the bathroom mirror and said “UGH!” Then I realized that the image was me! It is surprising for me to see the reflection in the mirror and admit it is the me of today. My mind’s eye continues to carry images from years ago.
After turning around to leave the bathroom, I understood the impact of that brief moment. My mind immediately jumped into action to tell me to turn back to the mirror to compliment the loving, creative, caring woman in the mirror and to express gratitude for all I do have in my life. “I accept me as I am today. I am a work in progress.”
Where am I, the me I used to know as the real me? I’m taking care of the me who is the current reflection in the mirror. Those other images had their mirror times. I took care of them too, when they needed me.
When I look in the full length mirror or even a compact make up mirror, I don’t gaze deeply and fixate on any details of the reflection. The person in there is accepting face washings, teeth brushings, hair combing, make-up, etc. After accomplishing the hygiene tasks, it’s time to move on to daily activities, while forgetting about those other past reflections.
During those various stages of development, I moved forward to allow the real me to change mentally, emotionally and physically. Yes, I was kicking and fighting the whole time, not understanding the new emerging person. I did feel the discontent coming from not looking ideal, which caused me to look away from the mirror. Both women and men have the same denial problems that go along with aging changes.
I’m the sum total of all those appearances which haunted me day after day. I could relate to each one when they were there. Now I struggle to adjust to the true inner me of today, while recognizing the similarities are the same inner woman from yesterday. The changes left their imprints on my body, emotions and my mind. I evaluated those faces and body versions through every modification, trying to make them perfect for others and for myself. Today I recognize perfect does not exist; not now, not ever.
I feel proud that I’ve aged so well, especially when considering the lack of attention I’ve given myself. Concentrating on other people and other things came first. Could I have done better, lived better, made better decisions? Absolutely! I did, and continue to do, the best I can with the tools at my disposal. My daily goals continue to remind me to be the best that I can be.
The past is done, it’s over and it cannot be changed. The wise person learns from the past, from those previous faces and body reflections in the mirror, and moves on. Silver sages, aka seniors, learn to adjust out of a desire to live a happier, healthier life.
All of those past decisions made me the sum total of the person I am today. They are learning tools to be appreciated, instead of using them to criticize the awesome me of today. I accept myself for being the person I am meant to be at this point in my life. I’m grateful for being a work in progress. It’s not easy. I do slide into the land of “what if…” I had soft smooth skin, a lean body, more energy and all my own natural teeth.
What do you see when you look inside of yourself? Are you critical of the spiritual, mental and emotional inner self, like you are of the outer physical presentation? Do those judgments make life happier and easier? Believe in yourself – Look in the mirror, smile and say with great conviction “I believe in me.”
A motivator/mentor once said, “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.”