She looked in the mirror and saw a map.
In the past, it was marked sometimes with blood, scabs and scars
from harsh skin treatments and poorly managed acne. These days it is
clear and often unadorned. In each case, it has held answers and
provided direction. Its appearance responds to my thoughts, and I
read this as some would tarot cards or tea leaves.
As a child, I usually made a ceremony of my deep conversations
with my reflection. I dimmed the lights, lit incense, and poured
myself a tall glass of iced lemonade. Then I spoke to myself aloud. These days, I usually just look
for the signs:
Do my eyes grow bright or dim? Does an idea make me looked
suddenly old or suddenly young?
I continue to examine my thoughts through my expressions.
I also do the reverse, pondering questions like:
Why do I feel better when my
hair is red instead of brown?
delight in abstract answers and direct revelations. In
each case, the mirror becomes an oracle through which my body speaks,
a map to the next steps of my journey.