My back is turned to you as I sit on the beach, the mountain cove curling to the north and south of me, as if to sweep me up in an embrace. I’m gazing down at my tanned feet and my painted toe nails encrusted with wet sand. My red dress is buffeted by the warm breeze and my thick black braid is a reassuring weight against my spine. I’m happy, young, thin, self-confident, content. I’m even vegetarian.
Unfortunately, this is not the person who gazes back at me when I look in the mirror. In fact, not one aspect of that description fits me, from the braid to the tan and painted toes. Looking back at me is someone who always comes as a bit of a shock. I don’t look like me. I never have.
It’s hard to reconcile this dichotomy, this contradiction, this, let’s face it, crashing disappointment. And I’ve felt this way my entire life. My corporeal being cannot compete with me. I never age. I wear red. I feel right.
I feel awkward about this dichotomy, but I really don’t know why. It’s not as if people are aware of it. It’s a rare person who takes the time to see who you really are. People generally make snap judgments based on outward appearances. The older I get, the more invisible I seem to become to those around me. Actually that’s a comfort, because it makes it easier for me to be who I really am.
As long as I don’t look in the mirror.
[Image Credit: elizabethhubbellstudio.com]
8 thoughts on “This is Who I Am”
I will always be a 34 year old, 109 lbs. Flowing, foot long, silky red headed, cockeyed optimist, whom reads everything I can get my hands on. Instead of this 71, slighty gray haired, 170 lb. shrunken, squatty nearly old woman that struggles everyday to keep one foot in front of the other and tries to remember what day it is. I am ready to cover all the mirrors. I would break them, but you know what you get then.
BTW, I love you just the way you are. Sight unseen, but with so many gifts to share, and willing to do so.
Makes you wonder how many inner beauties we pass in the street every day, doesn’t it? And I love you too! 🙂
Somewhere in my mid-40’s I slipped on Harry Potter’s cloak of invisibility. I’ve found that people just don’t seem to *see* me anymore, much less look for that 22 year old I still am inside.
It’s strange, isn’t it? It’s even worse if you gain weight. It’s like people look right through you. I think I could walk through a mall with a sign that says, “Look at me!” and two minutes later everyone could be interviewed and not even recall I had been there. It happened in my 40’s, too, come to think of it.
And now I feel guilty that I look exactly like who I am… only better looking… HA!