Thursday, May 17, 2012
The Girl I Used to Be
I saw my younger self today…while I was shoe shopping. I gasped inwardly and stopped dead in my tracks for a moment. It wasn’t just the long straight brown hair with the center part and the shapely legs. It was the profile, the great tip off that it was indeed me at 19. I followed her for a step or two. She was unaware that I was glancing at her from the corner of my eye. I was mesmerized to see myself in the flesh, younger, prettier, lovelier.
A slight ache … why exactly? Her unsuspecting beauty, her naive allure? At that age, I let others dictate my worth, my value, my attractiveness. It was the age I simply did not know how beautiful I really was or more importantly, who I really was.
I shrugged the ache away and meandered the aisles but when I reached the check out, there I was again, directly in front. I became aware that my lovely self was trying to make a choice between two pairs of sandals, just having been informed that her credit card could only pay for one. The clerk was barely hiding her impatience, the line was queuing. Quietly, I offered, “The taupe snakeskin will be more versatile”. My younger self looked up gratefully, relieved, and for a moment her brown eyes held my brown eyes. She snorted, a short uneasy giggle escaped, and then a barely muttered “Uh...thanks”.
Through the store’s plate glass window, I watched my younger self fade into the vast parking lot. My reflection in the window came back to me suddenly with a tender smile upon my lips. Bless her little heart.