The Distorting Mirror

Gabrielle's face melting

For years, people around me have told me that I see the good in others.  I have occasionally had to defend myself against any implied accusation of naivety by saying that I am not blind to all the evil in the world - it's just that I have chosen to focus my gaze on all the good because giving anything our attention also gives it energy and I'd rather be feeding the good stuff.  All well and good.

As my illness gradually stripped me of any ability/capacity to DO anything, I was left with one thing only: me.  In such a circumstance, it is impossible to avoid looking at oneself squarely in the eyes.  Over time, it became slowly obvious that I did not like what I saw.  I became aware that, in truth, I did not really like WHO I was. This was shocking to me because I had never felt this way before.  Of course, there is always room for improvement and learning but this is no reason to dislike oneself.

I asked myself (aside of any medical problems): what is wrong with me?  I stayed with this question for a long time but, try as I might, I failed to come up with any profound serious flaw, aside of course from the imperfect nature of all human beings. This was an uncomfortable truth - it is as if I really wanted to find something terribly awful lurking somewhere in my dark corners....

I talked my discomfort through with members of my family and of my Healing Team (if you would like to read more about my Healing Team please click here and read Shocked back to Life). These various discussions helped me come to this visual revelation:  I saw myself in my mind's eye looking at myself into a Distorting Mirror, not so much like the convex or concave mirrors you see in fun fairs but more like a mirror with a vertical wavy distortion. The reflection that met my eyes wasn't the straight me - it was a bent version of it.

My next reaction was to wonder what I needed to do to straighten my mirror.  No great insight came to me in this regard until a conversation I had over the telephone with my French sister-in-law.  Being the loving perceptive person that she is, she did not hesitate: "you've got to smash your distorting mirror" she said.  This immediately felt so right and so good that I mentally grabbed a big hammer and I shattered my distorting mirror to pieces.  At that moment, I felt a ton lighter.  I knew then I had got rid of more weighty unnecessary baggage.

Looking into my childhood, it is not difficult to theorise about how my Mirror became distorted in the first place.  But, this is not really what matters here. What is important is that I am now beginning to see who I am as I am - not perfect but overall OK.  I even experienced a highly amusing moment watching myself on my last video broadcast to make sure I hadn't talked a lot of garbled nonsense - normally, I am very critical of myself on screen but this time, I started to smile as I was watching the video.  I remember thinking "what am I grinning about?", and then this thought came to me in a flash and totally out of the blue as I continued to watch myself: "this is a nice lady - I wish I could be her friend"!!!!!  I laughed so loudly that my husband came up to my office to see what was happening...

It has taken me 57 years to become My Friend - until then, I now know that in spite of all my positive thinking I had only managed to feel like a Knackering Critic :0)

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