Mirror Me

photo 2After a frigid, snow-laden winter and several days of drenching rains, the sun is shining.

Sitting at lunch I see my image reflected back to me twice. One reflection is close and one is far away. Reflected to the side I see the street and people approaching from behind.

Too many reflections.
Too many version of myself.

Some, I can almost touch and some are so far away they barely seem to be in the same room with me.  I feel like that when I look ahead–multiple reflections in multiple mirrors and all of them are just out of reach.  I’m grasping for direction, but there is nothing of substance to hold onto.

I’m noticing myself everywhere lately–staring back from a glass storefront, a shiny car, or a quickly evaporating puddle…

Me. Me. Me.
I’m haunted by my own face.

I’ve been following the path someone else projected on me for far too long and the reflections I’m seeing are starting to resemble someone I don’t recognize.

Which path do I take?  Which reflection is my true self?

I notice that where the light is stronger, the reflection is stronger.  Where the light is dim, my image mingles with the images of things around me.  I still and fade into the background. The bustle takes over.

Opening day baseball fans decked out in black and orange.
A junkie in the middle of a nod.
Buses and cars trundling forward then stopped, abruptly, in traffic.
A woman encircled by smoke.
Office workers escaping fluorescent lights.
A blind man with his stick.

Where do I fit?

Usually I walk past these things without noticing. I’m there in the reflection, but I’m not always conscious of it. I practice invisibility.

Lately, I’m always aware. Each unintentional self portrait is asking…asking…asking…

What do you see?

Look closely.
There’s something important you’re missing.

Reflections are supposed to be superficial–an image of the outside, but they can show  much more. Maybe that’s why I’ve been seeing myself so much lately. I need to look past the outward image that others use to define me.

I need to go deeper…beyond.
Keep reaching.

I am so much more that what you see on the outside. So much more…

I’ve always had a fascination with reflections. It shows in my photography. I look into a mirror each time I compose a picture. Each image, no matter what the subject, contains a bit of me.

A mentor once told me I should do an entire series focusing on a specific type of reflections. I still plan to do that one day.  Maybe the universe is trying to tell me that it’s time.

When you walk past a brightly lit window, who looks back at you?  Do you embrace both the seen and unseen?

I gaze into my own eyes reflected in a shallow puddle and I sometimes lose myself in their depth.


3 thoughts on “Mirror Me

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  2. This is so touching, thank you Michelle.

    I too love reflections and enjoyed thinking about your question of what I see of myself in a lit window. I am aware of the reflection looking back at me, but it is only with time that I can begin to delve into the unseen too. I would like to do that more. I will make the time. It is so fascinating to look into our own eyes and allow ourselves to be open to our self.

    And as you said, we are so much more than our outer bits.


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