Every Time I Look in the Mirror

mom picMom, I see you every time I look in the mirror. In my twenties and thirties, I might not have appreciated the similarities as much as I do now.

When I’m walking past a car window or hallway mirror, I catch a fleeting image of my face. It startles me, because I think I’ve just seen you, yet I know you’re not here with me. Now that I’m older, you show more on me–there’s the slight double chin, the serious expression that demands perfection of yourself, the jowly cheeks starting to droop from my once heart-shaped face. Strands of gray hair hiding amongst the brown.

We looked alike when we were younger; we look alike now, too.

I’m not perfect, but I’m so grateful that I’m turning into you. You gave me devotion to literature and art, an obsession with books, a delight in children, a passion for the people of God, a compulsion to serve others, a quest-filled pursuit to learn more about everything–especially about my spiritual journey.

Every mother gives life. But the truly inspired and saintly moms give life in a myriad of other ways, ones that aren’t visible until perhaps later on the maturity timeline. Those moms lay a foundation for their children and grandchildren to engage life with resilience and joy, giving them the ability to see beyond themselves and the circles of their own human existence. Those moms mold lives that keep on living, even after death.

When I look in the mirror, I see you, but I also see something greater than you. I see Jesus living through me:  pursuing, loving, serving. It is the purest of all reflections.

Thanks, Mom, for sewing yourself into the fabric of my being.


“Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am known. And now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. But the greatest of these is love.”–1 Cor. 13:12-13