My Reflection Can’t Look Me in the Eye

Posted: October 18, 2013 in Latest post

By Zainab

I have heard it all my life,

A voice calling a name I recognized as my own.

Sometimes it comes as a soft-bellied whisper.

Sometimes it holds an edge of urgency.

But it always says: Wake up my love.

You are walking asleep.

There’s no safety in that!

The Call by Oriah Mountain Dreamer


Why is it that we so frequently try to re-invent the person we are, but so infrequently want to be the person we have become? We allow ourselves to be defined by the clothes we wear, the cars we drive and the friends we keep. It is a juggling act that most of us can manage, even master, but sooner or later we are confronted by a real, personal question: Who am I and what have I become?


We dress, think, live, behave and even react a certain way with the sole purpose of fitting in. Unbeknownst to us, we have surrendered our lives to imitating trends, looks, likes and behavior. We are relentlessly bombarded by mainstream media, the master puppeteers, tugging at invisible strings and manipulating our every move.


We are no longer the keeper of our own souls, our inner being. Our downfall, partly because of an inherent basic human need to belong to a tribe as there is safety in number.


What ever happened to just being confident about your own distinct gifts and dreams and believing in not just who you are, but also what you are and where you are? What ever happened to just allowing your special traits to flourish and to become the person you were meant to be?


I knew a girl once. Her name was Zainab and we used to be the best of friends. She completed my sentences, knew all my joys and all my fears. We loved the some things, were intrigued by similar wonders and cried and felt sad for the same reasons. Somehow, I have managed to lose that friend. We drifted apart and I’m too scared to try to find her. I am still fearful of what I might find. Would she approve of who I have become? Would I be content with whom she is?

It is a daunting prospect to focus our judgmental eye on our inner sense of self. It takes a tremendous amount of courage to examine one’s persona, to unravel those complexities that make us unique. The thought alone scares us, but it is all right to be afraid. It’s what makes us human. We are frail and vulnerable at times and it’s okay to feel like that. It is, however, essential that we do take that first step to self-realisation.


So when you have some time available, when you are all twittered, facebooked and whatsapped out, look your reflection in the eye and ask yourself these questions: Who do my friends perceive me to be? Am I happy with their perception? Am I truly content to be me?


My hope on this quest is that I find that girl I once lost and when we reacquaint and rekindle our neglected friendship, she will look me in the eye and smile appreciatively. Only then, will I be truly content with me, myself and I.

  1. Wow! This is a really awesome piece of writing! It has inspired me in so many ways. Thank you!

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