Daily Prompt: Mirror, Mirror

Look in the mirror. Does the person you see match the person you feel like on the inside? How much stock do you put in appearances?

I guess so – I don’t spend a lot of time in front of the mirror but I’m a realistic sort of person so I know I’m getting older and because I’d never bother with surgery or Botox or anything else things are going to change. I don’t think I feel as young as I did when I was 20 or 30 or that I even want to

It doesn’t freak me out that I’m looking older but it does freak me out a bit that I’m getting older. It’s because I’ll be turning 50 in about a month and I just can’t see how that can be possible. I know everyone bangs on about life beginning now and it being so wonderful and such a great time but I think they’re kidding themselves a teeny little bit. Sure I can see all the positives that come with getting older but when it comes down to it you haven’t really got a lot of good years left in you compared to the amount you’ve had. Even if you’re a fit older person you’ve probably only got until 75 – maybe 80 max I reckon where you can get around and travel and just do stuff easily. Sure you see the occasional 90-year-old jumping out of a plane but it’s not the norm. So that’s what kind of freaks me out; I’ve got a lot of things I want to do so I need to get cracking on them as time is flying.

Recently I bought one of those 6 x magnification mirrors because I couldn’t see what I was doing when I put my makeup on and man I can tell you, there’s no hiding from the truth in one of those things.

I don’t put a lot of stock in appearances and try not to judge people based on how they dress or look but I think it’s kind of natural to. You just have to go out for lunch or shopping with your elderly disabled father to see how people made assumptions about him based on how he presented physically. Or if I go out with my 80-year-old mother, people treat her like a child or as if she’s senile in some way. She was buying a coffee machine and I said I was going to go look at the cameras and the salesman said I’d better just stay there and hear what he had to say – because obviously my mother wasn’t going to understand or might forget in ten minutes time. I’m like – I don’t want the coffee machine, talk to her about it.

Anyway I think I’m off track now so I’ll just add this little part from the short story Eleven which kind of sums up how I feel about getting older. When I look in the mirror I just see me and I feel like me which is a culmination at this point of all the years I’ve ever been.

Sandra Cisneros 

What they don’t understand about birthdays and what they never tell you is that when you’re eleven, you’re also ten, and nine, and eight, and seven, and six, and five, and four, and three, and two, and one. And when you wake up on your eleventh birthday you expect to feel eleven, but you don’t. You open your eyes and everything’s just like yesterday, only it’s today. And you don’t feel eleven at all. You feel like you’re still ten. And you are —underneath the year that makes you eleven.

Like some days you might say something stupid, and that’s the part of you that’s still ten. Or maybe some days you might need to sit on your mama’s lap because you’re scared, and that’s the part of you that’s five. And maybe one day when you’re all grown up maybe you will need to cry like if you’re three, and that’s okay. That’s what I tell Mama when she’s sad and needs to cry. Maybe she’s feeling three.

Because the way you grow old is kind of like an onion or like the rings inside a tree trunk or like my little wooden dolls that fit one inside the other, each year inside the next one. That’s how being eleven years old is.

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24 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Mirror, Mirror

  1. My person in the mirror is never who I expect to see.

    I don’t mind getting older, but I greatly mind looking it. But that’s probably because I live in a highly looks-based area.

  2. Even when I look in a mirror I don’t feel the age that I am – poor lighting! 🙂 I don’t feel my age until you mention you’re about to be 50! Then there’s no getting away from the fact that I’m older than you…

    • Yeah well thats one good thing – everyone’s older than me, even my friends because I started school young in the February so they all turned 50 last year.

      You need one of those magnification mirrors.

  3. Our karate dojo is lined with mirrors, so there’s no escaping what I look like when I practice: a nerdy 50-something woman in a karate gi, never quite as lively or on point as the younger students or the black belts. I think my sensei enjoys that, however. Not many people my age try to learn something as physical as karate, I suppose because we’re more concerned about getting hurt. The last time I sprained an ankle, it took a month and a half before I was able to walk on both feet properly. Also, we’re probably more conscious of looking ridiculous (though seeing some middle-aged men in Speedos may prove me wrong). But I decided I’d rather have wrinkles and crow’s feet than a potbelly and a shuffling walk like my parents. I can deal with an aging face, but not with being to climb a flight of stairs or keeping up with my kids on a hike.

    • Definitely – that’s what I want, to be strong and fit and if my face has to look a bit hard due to lack of padding then so be it. Oh and to avoid gobble gobble arms for as long as possible.

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  5. Sometimes when I’m walking and see my reflection in a window, I’m surprised because I think I look mean and I don’t feel that way. Same as when I hear a recording of my voice, I sound very aggressive.

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  7. What are you going to do for your 50th?! (I’m big on ‘special number’ celebrations…I spent about six months celebrating my 30th)

    What a beautiful sentiment that story is. My fifteen year old always comes out when there’s a good-looking bloke around…”oh I’ll just stutter over every second word and now walk into this pot plant.”

    And those mirrors are the worst thing that ever happened to the planet.

    • Lol, I thought I looked pretty good in the mirror, Daz went into immediate depression after looking at himself although he was looking down into it which is a bad idea. Lizzie tells me I’m holding up ok – she’s a dental assistant now and checks out all the middle age women under the big light so she can compare me to them. She said most of them look pretty rough, lol, it’s smoking she says.

      Look seriously I’m just trying to be in denial about the whole 50 thing. I’m definitely not one of those people embracing it. I mean I know it has to happen but I’ll fight it all the way. Which is why I’m not having a function, I’ll just have lots of little events with different groups of people. I’m having a year of 50 – figure if I have to do it I may as well make the most. Hot air balloning with a school friend also 50, a sampler cruise in March, hopefully Broome when it cools down a bit and maybe for the actual day I’ll go up the coast for a couple of nights. I was going to go to Hawaii but February is one of the wettest months which could be a bummer and everywhere in Australia pretty much sucks in February – hot, wet, bushfires, jelly fish, you name it.

      And yes I love that story – I can imagine thats how you still feel when you’re 90.

      • Judging by the pics you put up here, you’re absolutely rocking it. Bet your girls are hoping they have your genes somewhere under all the Daz. (Mum doesn’t have wrinkles and Dad doesn’t have greys – I’m hoping like hell I inherited both of those!)

        A year of 50 sounds like a bloody great idea. 🙂

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