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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

When I Look In The Mirror - My Mother Looks Back!

Lately I've been noticing that when I look in the mirror, the reflection that looks back resembles more of my mom than the face I'm used to seeing. This is probably a natural part of aging, or perhaps my coming into a maturity I did not have before. I have noticed this especially around my eyes.

I realize this is probably a natural progression to aging - That you begin to look more like images you have of your parent(s). (Not that they were truly as old as we remember them to be).

When I was younger, there were plenty of years spent where I would have resisted the notion that I was anything like my mom. However, in recent years, I have come to enjoy it.

These eyes that belong to my mom share a lot of love in my life. Though, there were moments when her eyes shed a disapproving look upon me - She often reminds me that I once told her she didn't yell at me with her voice, but rather, with her eyes. What I meant was that the loving look that was naturally befitting to her face would change when she showed disapproval. I did not like this, because I wanted her approval.

There is something special about a person's eyes. The Bible says that the eyes are a window to our soul. I think this is true.

My youngest daughter will turn my face toward her with her little hands. When I am crabby, she wants to make sure I am not angry at her. My response to her has always been, "Look into my eyes. Do you see love there?" So, now when she turns my head toward hers, she will announce: "Mommy, I see love in your eyes."

My mother's eyes display her emotions. And, now I see it in my eyes as well. Though once rebelling against the notion, this is something I am now finding to actually enjoy.

My mother's eyes have shined on me a lot of love.

They have seen me through many middle-of-the-night scares when I would nearly stop breathing because of severe tonsilitis and allergies.

They have guided me through youthful foolishness.

Her eyes cried in prayers for my protection for years.

They have let me look into them to see a portion of who she is

It was a magical moment when her eyes and my eyes gazed upon what would be my wedding dress.
Both of us knew, by one single look, that this dress was the one as tears gushed out of our eyes at the exact same moment.

They had the joy of being one of the first to see each of my children after they were born.

They carefully surveyed cross-stitch patterns to make wonderful pieces of art.

Several years ago, we almost lost my mom. As she woke up from surgery, she had trouble focusing on the objects that surrounded her. We would later discover that the oxygen level used caused damage to her eyes, so she would have blind spots. But, I will never forget her looking at me that day and describing how she saw me. I was a figure that was outlined by my long hair streaming down my face.

As I gazed at her, all I wanted was for my mom to keep on living to see me through more of my, and my children's lives.
She did.

And, now I look into the mirror and see the shape and contour of the eyes that seem to belong on my mother. But, they are now mine.

I will proudly wear my eyes and hope that my eyes will encourage and guide those who look into them..... Like my mother's eyes did for me.

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