That Mirror Image: What has Changed


I feel almost now, that at day 20, I am on the outside looking in – only remembering that once bare, hollow, fearful human that existed such a short time ago – inside of me.

I woke up this morning and gazed in the mirror as usual – the same questions – “‘any new pimples?” “are my eyes swollen today?” “how’s that scratch from the baby yesterday?” …

As I walked into the room and set my green eyes to gaze into the mirror – I wondered what it would have felt like had I been the outsider – looking at, and into, somebody else with the same struggle.

Would I have even known how bad they were hurting?

I have challenged myself on many occasions to watch others as they walk  by – a simple glance – and I dig deep inside of myself, my wonderment, and think – could they use a smile? A random hello? A how are YOU doing?

I think about myself during my worst hours – when I did have the courage to take myself into public to even the grocery store – I spoke none of my struggles. Many people passed by – the cashiers would say “happy holidays” and inside I would scoff – “you have no idea how unhappy this holiday is …” but I would never say a word. I would smile, as if I was in no pain, say the same, and walk away.

From the outside looking in – have you ever wondered if somebody was crying, hurting, battling uphill with an issue you had no experience with, or had no idea how it could affect every single move, thought, expression of both your body and your soul …. ?

I look at myself now – my face, my eyes, every day when I first wake up and I flashback to those darkest hours – and how I had hidden my struggle inside to strangers that randomly walked by me in the street – and they had no idea the amount of pain I was in, maybe I could have used a hug, or in the slightest chance – maybe that complete stranger was the same as me – had they known, would they have been inspired to overcome?

You can look into a window from the outside – “wow that chicken looks great, wish I was eating dinner with them…” and you can look outside in from the perspective of a humans deepest, darkest, wells – pits – of feelings, needs, and struggles – you either notice, or you walk by.

My experiences on The Overcoming have taught me to become an observer. Sure – I love trees, flowers, watching babies on a playground so happy on the jungle gym … (my days of outside play on the swings are long gone … but they seem so close in my memory) – but what I mean is an observer of human nature.

When you pass me by – know that from the outside, I’m looking into you, hoping for you – praying, having faith that whatever path you may be walking on, whatever mountains you are climbing – you will overcome.

Do not think you are alone – I know how it feels to believe you are in that lonely corner with no arms reaching out to listen, feel, understand.

When you walk by me and see my smile staring back – my strawberry blonde hair in a neat set bun, my cool jeans and button up shirt, wearing up scale perfume and a nice pair of sunglasses – remember this:

My heart and soul are completely different – my pathway to recovery is that of a compelling novel or television movie you would think could never happen to you – and I live that day by day as things move forward. My story is real – and I know many of you have, are, or will suffer with my same plight – know I’m watching you.

And by watching, I mean supporting, holding, comforting you from afar – if even with a simple glance on the street – a simple hello – stubbing my toe on your shoe as I walk by your table at a restaurant, even with my blog.

From the outside in – let that journey into the unknown of another person – be your guide to a better understanding of the diversity of human spirit that exists – and needs your comfort – and to be saved in some way, shape, or form.

Become that.



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