My Mirror

by LaVonne Misner

I no longer like my mirror. It used to be my friend not long ago—before the pandemic. My mirror used to reflect my professionally groomed hair, my smooth, flawless skin and shiny alert eyes: eyes that looked forward to living life, eyes that anticipated visiting with people and my adult children, and they sparkled when they saw my grandchildren. Those eyes went to restaurants to meet friends, and to the theater to nourish my artistic soul. They flew to far-away lands and sailed on ocean liners to satisfy my travel itch. Before the pandemic my eyes reflected the zest I had for living a full and active life.

As of late, however, my mirror has been letting me down. It implies I no longer have an interest in seeing people or the beauty around me. My eyes look dull and lifeless, and my mirror no longer looks happy. It has added imperfections to my face—vertical parallel curves around the edges of my mouth when I force a smile and pretend all is fine. The mirror may think I haven’t noticed, but I have, and I don’t like what it is doing at all.

What that mirror has done to my hair is despicable. It mocks me at my noble attempts to cut it myself. I know I’m no hairdresser, but it’s not like I’m doing a terrible job on purpose. It’s difficult to cut one’s own hair, and I would have thought my mirror might try to provide a little benevolent understanding.

Perhaps worst of all is the puffiness I see in my reflection. My face seems to have grown wider. I never knew faces could grow, and I find it interesting to realize the pandemic has allowed me time to think about such matters.

My scale is an even worse adversary than my mirror. The numbers on it keep going up, no matter how much I express my displeasure with such an action. I must admit, the scale and I have never been the best of friends, but as of late I’m having increasingly angry thoughts about it.  I’m considering not ever visiting it again—breaking off all ties until it learns to behave itself.

I don’t know what is happening in my house either, because even the clothes hanging in my closet have begun acting up. Not so much my shirts and blouses—they’ve remained their normal wrinkled selves, all squished together and lined up on hangers. It’s the pants and slacks that are the main offenders. They’ve decided to shrink—even the ones I haven’t washed. I don’t know what has gotten into them, but they are doing something to make their waistbands smaller. But, I’ve gotten even with them. I’ve decided to let them hang there, on their dusty hangers. I refuse to be pushed around by my jeans. I’m the one who is in charge of life—not a disrespectful mirror, not an unfriendly scale, and certainly not a bunch of old clothes that I don’t like very much anymore anyway. So, I ordered two pairs of stretch pants online. Those stretch pants and I have become very good friends.

Now that I’ve gotten all that off my chest, I feel a lot better and I think I’ll go to the kitchen and make myself a cup of coffee. I might even have a piece of that blueberry coffee cake I made yesterday.

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