To me, mirrors strike me as a strange kind of thing. They give one pause to reflect and to see images of themselves of how they appear at a certain moment in time. The image that the mirror returns is not captured for the sake of posterity as it would be in a photograph or a video or, for that matter, even a painting or a sculpture. No, the image that the mirror returns is fleeting at best. It might even be deceiving.
I’ve got a person whom I consider a friend that is constantly looking at themselves in the mirror. They check themselves to ensure that nary a hair is out of place, that no food particles have wedged themselves into their pearly whites and that their clothes are aligned just right. They smile to themselves and give a toss of the head to get the look that they are striving for just right. The mirror never seems to deny them. I just don't know if they actually like what they see.
As for me, vanity has never been my strong suit. Sure, I like to look nice and clean and properly presented but I don’t spend much time dwelling on it. Lately, when I look in the mirror, I’ve been trying to find the person that’s been hiding behind it. The person that I want to be, not the person that I am.
I’ve never been much of what you might call a “spiritual” kinda guy. I’ve pretty much taken it for granted that whatever higher being there might be, whether it be God, Allah, Buddha, Vishnu or the old oak tree has some kind of plan and who was I to interfere?
Those closest to me have noticed a certain sadness in my demeanor over the last couple of months. Nobody can pinpoint when it started but they likened to the way the night just creeps up on you and before you know it, darkness has settled in. It’s only occasionally pierced by the light of the moon or the occasional twinkling of the stars.
I thought to myself that maybe it was the beginning of a head on collision with a mid-life crisis and that if I took a vacation, had a fling or two, bought some new shit and basically spoiled myself that the darkness would go away.
The other day, as I was nursing a few at the local watering hole, I mentioned to my friends that I could probably go to a shrink since I’m one of the lucky ones that has insurance these days and most of ‘em thought it might be a good idea. I was heading out the door and one of my friends told me to hold up, he wanted to talk to me alone. We made our way to our cars and he slipped a phone number into my hand and told me call it.
Turns out, it was the number of a local clergyman.
I’m not going to go into much detail about we talked about. The conversation lasted only about 15 minutes or so. As I said earlier, I’m not what you would call a “God type” but I felt a certain comfort in talking to a stranger who didn’t care about how much of a deductible there was and if could meet it. I also felt a certain sense of relief knowing that there would be no medications involved.
I have an appointment today to meet him in person. I don’t know what to expect. Truth be told, I’m kinda nervous.
I’m certainly not looking for any miracles or to be “saved” or to be “born again” or any other terms that one might use when one feels lost. All I’m hoping is that he can help provide a glimpse into the man that’s been hiding behind the mirror for so long and that the man likes what he sees.
On another note, today is Veterans Day. For those of you who, like myself, are veterans, we pay homage to our fallen and stricken comrades whether they fell in wars fought in the past, the present or the future. The battles that you fight, are fighting, and seemed destined to fight are not of little consequence. You have made the ultimate sacrifice and for that we are all eternally grateful. May you and your loved ones find peace in wherever you may roam.