Archive for July 9th, 2009

Away and away

I know I’ve been pretty quiet round here lately. I am crazy, crazy busy having taken on more work from another source just at the same time we had decided that I needed to pull back to focus on the boys. Ha! Isn’t that the way things work? This new work is meant to last only 8 weeks but already I have the feeling it could stretch out a bit longer so I’ll really have to reassess things then. These couple of weeks are particularly crazy so hopefully in a wee while, despite working 2 jobs and looking after two young un’s I feel a bit more balanced. Ha! Who said balance was bunk? Spot on.

I have been waiting to write all day about something in particular. Something that struck me so markedly at the time and made me think immediately, I need to blog about this.

Last night, I joined a wonderful, smart, warm, inviting group of women for another meeting of bookclub. We are all very different – in attitudes, lifestyles, looks, preferences, but we are ALL so open and embracing of everyone and everything. I paint this very flattering picture of us all because it is this wonderful atmosphere that provides the somewhat discordant setting of what happened when I made my way to the toilet.

L’s bathroom is mainly mirrors. You can’t avoid them. Even sitting on the loo. And I was. Sitting on the loo. Smiling to myself about our most recent conversation, R’s joke, B’s insight and generally appreciating it all. Then I got a glimpse of myself. Not a look, simply a glimpse; a very quick blur of brown hair and pale skin. And I knew, deep, deep down that I couldn’t look at myself at that moment. That looking at myself would make me very upset. That looking at myself would whip me so quickly away from the lovely buzz we were all enjoying that night. I knew (and when I say knew, it was something bodily, something so intrinsically known that cognition wasn’t necessary or relevant) that what I would see would be truely ugly. That I would find it ugly. That I would be shocked by this ugliness. I would hate what I saw.

And I didn’t looked. I finished. I washed my hands with my head still hanging low and I returned to the laughter and the food and the wine and the warmth. But I also knew that something terrible had happened. Something I was ashamed of. Something I couldn’t control and yet knew was somehow a huge betrayal of myself and even of everyone sitting around that table. Everyone trying hard to accept themselves and be open to others. I had been unable to look at myself because I was so scared of what I would see. Because I knew that I would be disgusted. Because I knew I wouldn’t have been able to laugh as much when I returned.

This all scared me. I can’t really make sense of it. But I do know that I felt profoundly that I was ugly. Grotesque even. And I can’t help but wonder why?

July 2009