Some days I spend hours getting ready; curling my hair just so, applying make-up to highlight any good features and cover the bad ones, putting together an outfit that is high-fashion (translation: uncomfortable and itchy) and strapping on black heels to finish off the look.
The other 363 days of the year, I don’t do that.
I throw a brush in my hair (and sometimes even forget it there), apply cover up so quickly that my entire vanity area is coated in a lovely “buff beige” snow and hope I won’t get in some accident where I land in the ER unexpectedly and they see I’m not wearing matching socks because I didn’t have time to fold the laundry.
Today was one of those 363 days.
I had just dropped the tiny trio off at St. Kristi’s (aka. Nana’s) house and was celebrating my blissful moments of freedom (well, with a baby in tow but that still counts) by doing something thrilling, life-changing and wonderful! I was doing…errands. Yep, I’m such a mom. Errands with one or no children along is now like a day at the spa (did someone just say SPA? What in the heck is that again?!).
First stop: Target. Or as we small-town moms that spend hours confined with rioting prisoners in small spaces known as our homes like to say it, “Tar-jay”. Saying that word with a French accent makes it sound much fancier. I tossed my baby into a cart (don’t freak out: I’m using writer-speak here, I was actually gentle and loving about it), zoomed down an aisle as I pulled out my shopping-list and suddenly I saw IT. Something I hadn’t seen all day. Something I hadn’t spent much time with at all in the past few years: a mirror.
Mirrors. I forget about those some days. They do come in handy! And this mirror on the wall at Target was particularly helpful as the person in the reflection needed a few (majorly downplaying with the word “few”) “touch-ups”.
To name a few of the things needing touch-ups; A pony-tail askew, wind-blown bangs, a sweater still unbuttoned after my last nursing job, and some lips in need of color. The surprise at the frazzled looking lady in the mirror caused a spontaneous word to erupt (rather loudly) from my mouth,
As it would just so happen (as these things always seem to “just so happen” to me, lucky girl), a man was passing me in the aisle and as I shouted “wow” at my reflection in the mirror, he swiveled his head to see this scene:
A lady checking herself out in the mirror as she adjusted herself and shouting WOW.
Yeah, that wasn’t what I meant at ALL!
Nonetheless, he seemed highly amused by it. I could almost hear his thoughts, “Well, she is sure confident. She must think she is all that and a bag of potato chips. She’s really impressed by herself as she checks her reflection out in that mirror.”
He chuckled and smiled approvingly at me (as in, up and down, yeah, you go-girl kind of smile…creepy!!!) then he walked away.
Even though it was a little unnerving, I had to tilt my head and pause in the middle of my critical self-assessment to realize that beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder. What makes us beautiful is not really all the wrapping ON the package as much as what’s glowing from INSIDE.
Confidence and joy radiate beauty to a world that is sludging through drab days of frowning people that don’t so much as look up from the sidewalk to say hello.
The mirror, mirror on the wall at Target seemed to reveal a few things to me; bad hair day, bad clothes day and (if I could figure out a way to know this by myself) I’m sure a bad breath day too! Meanwhile, a brief encounter with a slightly-sleazy stranger (say that five times fast) revealed something very unexpected: a smile and a bit of confidence covers a multitude of sins and makes the inner beauty shine!