Saturday, 12 November 2011

Smiley Face versus Sophisticated Eyebrow

Yesterday, I looked in the mirror and I saw a smiley face looking back at me. Ok, two fairly black circles under the eyes were there, due to the lack of sleep and the absence of "Touche Eclat" appliance (I am not promoting the Yves Saint Laurent product, but let's be honest, we are talking about one of the 21st century miracles here), so...yes... apart from the circles, a smile was there. Well, it wasn't a Colgate smile, but still... it was there. Subtle and definite. I have to say, I was quite shocked actually. Not that whenever I look myself at the mirror, I get sick, no. I don't mean that. But this genuinely generous reaction of my reflection did take me by surprise. Not really used to it.

What is it that we actually see when we look ourselves in the mirror? 

All these thoughts that are bombarding our minds:

" Oh God, do I look like shit?...yes, I look like shit ", "Is this a pimple?!!! Today? Whyyyyyy? Whyyyyy meeeee?", "Hmmm, my nostrils are quite big, I think. Yep. They are huge, actually. Ok, let's try to ignore that for now", " If I raise my eyebrow like... like this....yeah... I do look really witty and clever and as one who has read Noam Chomsky, don't I?" , "This is the look....yeah...I mean really, who can resist now?"

Endless thoughts. Observing, judging, criticising, reassuring, encouraging, questioning our own images and actually ourselves.

Because that's what we are supposed to do, what we are expected to do, what we learned to do. To wake up in the morning and put on the appropriate mask on our faces, the one which smiles mysteriously or raises a sophisticated eyebrow or look confident or bubbly or cool or perfect. And then, by the end of the day we look (if we dare) in the mirror again to see this overwhelmed, exhausted reflection looking back, asking for some understanding and self loving-not in an arrogant, self indulgent way, not at all.  It is like it is asking for a little tap on the shoulder. A "come on, you did well" kind of thing.

A smiley face in the mirror. It doesn't happen very often, does it? And from a perfectionist's point of view, it happens very very rarely. Almost never. But when it does, it totally makes your day.