I stand in the shower with hot water running over me. I savour its warmth on my skin and let it massage my aches and pains. I tilt my head back, put my face toward the nozzle, close my eyes, and surrender myself to the water raining down on me. I feel old. My body aches. I am tired. I want to stand under this delicious hot water washing over me forever. Alas, before long I will have a baby crying for a feed and a toddler demanding her breakfast.
I reluctantly turn the shower off, drag my feet as I reach for my towel, and watch the steam swirl around the room. I wrap my towel around me and walk toward the mirror. I put my hand up to the mirror, wipe away the steam, and look at my reflection. It disappears quickly with the steam unable to escape the room. I open the window letting the crisp winter air in and slowly watch my foggy reflection become clear.
I look at myself. My dark hair, thick and wild in need of a cut. My eyebrows even wilder. My hazel eyes dull and tired. Even my freckles seem to be dull today. I bend over, turn on the tap and splash cold water over my face, take a deep breath, and look again. Deeply.
Who is this person I see before me? I ask myself yet again. What am I doing with my life? What is the meaning of all this? Am I happy? Am I living life to the full?
I frown getting frustrated with myself. Why must I be so deep, so early in the morning? I look away, dry myself, and ponder some more while I get dressed.
Why can’t I just be content with what I already have? I have everything I could ever want in the form of my precious family. Some days though, I wake up with a nagging feeling that comes from deep within. It’s a hollow feeling. A zombie feeling. I can never put my finger on what it is. I call this feeling the mean reds.
I think the mean reds stem from me feeling as though I should be giving more in my life. More to the girls, more to Dave, more to me. I don’t want to just stumble through life and get caught up in mundane rituals. I want it all. I want to have my cake and eat it too. I want to feel alive.
The mean reds make me scared though. I sigh. I’m too tired to give any more. I don’t have it in me.
I continue to ponder as I open my jar of face cream. I look back to the mirror while I apply it.
My reflection speaks to me. You are Renee. You are special. You are a devoted wife, loving mother, and a funny, warm and clever woman. You are happy. You are living life to the full. You may be scared of failure, but trust in yourself and you will succeed.
I finish applying my cream, give my wild mass of hair a brush and slick some colour on my lips. I put my shoulders back, take a deep breath and nod at my reflection. Right then, let’s go kick this day’s butt.
Today, I am linking up with Always Josefa for Conversations over Coffee. Each month, Josefa opens up a link for people to share posts with a specific theme. This month’s theme is Conversations with the mirror.