- Leah Van Someren
Nice to Meet You, Me
A mirror hangs, where most mirrors do.
A functional tool?
A list of check marks, the Routine Rule Master, if you will.
Keeping the image it bears in line with the world’s default setting.
Its latest measuring stick.
Intricately externalized, inside and out.
Our greetings are kept cordial between that image and I.
A casual half glance and a quick check of the teeth, because like you,
I have somewhere to be.
Going here, going there. Always going.
With the future coming up behind me, my heels avoiding the threatening clip, moment by moment,
I hardly - if ever - slow down to meet myself.
Let alone know me intimately.
“I did that once. I already know me.”
“I don’t have time, I have to go.”
“Plus, nothing is new to know, I am the same as I was yesterday. Same as I’ve always been.”
Rebuttals shoved at the invitation nestled in the low rumble of my thumping heart.
And so we go and go, myself and me, strangers to each other.
At best, low-functioning roommates.
“What at worst” you wonder?
An out of tune imitation.
A slant rhyme mockery.
A faded carbon copy of everything around me.
But one thing I’ve learned almost by accident,
like learning the table exists by stubbing your toe:
Rebuttals and resistance are exceptionally talented at masking fear.
Indeed, that is their only duty.
And in the gap between goings,
in odd stillness and uncomfortable silence commonly labeled ‘boredom’,
A different invitation is delivered from the depths of the low rumble:
“Perhaps I refrain from saying hello because I’m afraid who I would discover staring back at me.”
With this as our backdrop, what does one do when the majority of world stops?
No where to go, no where to be.
And the image in the mirror lingers without a forced - dare I say - convenient “goodbye”.
And the low rumble tumbles on, beckoning me forth.
What do I do when given the opportunity to meet myself?
Indeed, what will I say and what will I find?
Because truth be told, one cannot come and go without being made different in between.
And with all those differences piling up, spilling over the counter and bursting from the closets of the soul,
who actually knows how the introduction will go.
I’m sure I’ll need to forgive her, offering arms full of compassion and grace.
And Lord knows, I’ll need to be forgiven by her, choosing to receive the same.
Will we cry? Unavoidably. Will we laugh? Undoubtably.
What else do you do with those you know and who know you?
Take it from me, amidst the uncertainty that’s always been and now refuses to be ignored,
even by yourself, you’re never alone.
Not in some beautiful, divine companionship way,
- that is another truth for another time -
but in a life-giving,
life-together-day-after-day kind of way.
And like the start of any friendship that's sure to end in rocking chairs and nursing homes,
we first must look at each other in the eye and say, "hello".
Because if you walk in The Way,
then leap by leap,
step by step,
fumble by fumble,
crawl by crawl,
you’re forever learning who it is Love already insists you are.
And I’ll be the first to say, that is someone worth meeting day after day.