Wednesday, June 06, 2012

life, even when you don't recognize it

My life today looks nothing like it did that Wednesday, before Bunny's father died. It's a little hard to fathom just how different things are. It hasn't sunk in yet.

There's a moment from the days after that is stuck in my head. It seems to epitomize this idea of things being so different that I don't recognize my life. A moment where I didn't even recognize myself.

It was the day after he died, I think. Or maybe the day after that. I'm not sure, because the days all seem to blend into each other. There's something of a haze surrounds this whole affair. We haven't quite worked our way out yet.

Just before heading to bed, I went to the washroom. To do the usual, brush my teeth, comb my hair, do my toilet business. The same things I do everyday. There was nothing unusual about these acts in and of themselves.

At some point, though, I looked in the mirror. I really looked, and I was transfixed. Who was this face, staring back at me? I saw my eyes, in my usual glasses, staring back at me. Were those really my eyes? They were empty, expressionless. It was like staring at a doll. There was nothing there.

I kept looking. I couldn't have looked away if I'd wanted to, really. Who knows what I did want, anyway? Cheeks seemed sunken, hollow. The skin I saw reflected back was so, so pale. Even the freckles were pale. When had my collarbones become so prominent? Was my neck really that long? My hair was pulled back, but the face I saw reflected didn't look masculine. (I always think I look too masculine. That's my own little stupid insecurity.)

I saw cheekbones and smile lines. Frown lines? That face was so expressionless, it was hard to tell. I tried a smile, forced and unnatural. Who was this girl with a narrow chin and dimples in both cheeks? I'd only ever noticed the one on my right cheek.

This person in the mirror looked nothing like me. Or else she looked everything like me, and I have no idea what I look like. I'm not sure which is more accurate. Maybe both at once. That rather describes exactly how my life feels right now.

I keep catching looks of myself in the mirror and not quite recognizing me. I'm spending a lot of time staring at mirrors, lately. The stories they tell me just don't make sense. Who is this girl I keep seeing? Is she really me?

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