Tag Archives: mirrors

Reflections of How I Used to Be….

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Reflections of How I Used to Be….

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Two small mirrors hang precariously on what was once my oldest son’s bedroom bookcase. These mirrors that are still loosely taped with Scotch Tape will never be removed as a long as I am alive as they were memories of comfort for my son. Just two very small mirrors held peace and tranquility as their reflection revealed to him things that might go bump in the night as a child. After all, life is only a reflection of what we allow ourselves to see.

Each morning I have looked in the bathroom mirror and seen the same face I have recognized all my life. Only when I take a selfie do I realize that some where in that mirrored reflection lies wrinkles, worry lines and the aftermath of years gone by that I don’t see.  Would I give it all back for a chance to start over and rewrite an ending or two for the girl I once knew in the mirror? Do I miss the person I used to be and used to look at?

When I was a child I told the mirror I wanted to be many things: a social worker, (would have brought everyone home) a doctor, (squeamish at the sight of blood) and a rock star (can’t sing). Then I really tried to have an easy life after many ups and downs and decided it would be better just to be strong, so I’ve had my reflective routines down for years.

The problem with getting older is you still remember how things used to be when you once looked in the mirror. Some days it was distorted and the reflection told you survival was not going to be easy– and maybe you just couldn’t run up that hill anymore. Because of a lonely childhood I used to think the worst thing in the world was to end up seeing just my reflection alone in that mirror. Maybe I just expected too much. In all honesty I really don’t understand the conflicting reflections I see in this world and still choose to remain quite naive. Some days I get banged up emotionally and hold myself hostage because that’s who I am and don’t face the fact that not everyone is meant to stay in your life.

Is there a point where you begin to give things up and not look at them anymore? Can I die while I still remember who I am –and who I used to be in that reflection? As Winnie the Pooh once said– “I used to believe in forever, but forever is too good to be true, so remember how far you’ve come, not how far you have to go”. I will never regret being that once younger, now older, face in the mirror because it made me who I am at this very point in time. I chose who I wanted to be and look back at the former reflections and finally realize what is now present and coming in that mirror can be so much better than what is gone. The mind always replays what the heart cannot delete– but some days it feels like I’m walking on broken glass–dangerous with sharp edges, but I am not going to hurt myself putting it all back together, as it can be all swept away and forgotten.

I find it hard to tell you, I find it hard to take
When people run in circles it’s a very very
Mad world, mad world

Information where you can buy all Linda Seccaspina’s books-You can also read Linda in The Townships Sun andScreamin’ Mamas (USA)

Come and visit the Lanark County Genealogical Society Facebook page– what’s there? Cool old photos–and lots of things interesting to read. Also check out The Tales of Carleton Place.

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What Becomes of a Broken Heart?

And Suddenly I Became Sad for NO Reason at All….

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Does Photography Remove Your Soul?

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I used to love the very few times I got to spend with my mother before she died. When she was out of the hospital on her good days; we used to roam the forgotten cemeteries in the countryside. My father sat shaking his head in his old Ford reading his Perry Mason paperbacks as he watched us read one crumbling stone after another.

I will never know why she had such a fascination for these places but she always reminded me it was important to remember the dead as their families soon forget about them. So one day, long after she had passed, I started collecting antique portraits of the deceased at country auction sales.

I gave them names and created stories because like my mother; I wanted them to know someone cared. My favourite picture is a huge Victorian mourning shadow box from 1919. The little girl died a year after her communion and inside the gold framed shadow box is a veil, her picture and dried calla lilies. An elderly friend told me one day that the little girl had probably passed because the photographer had stolen her soul. I never really thought about it again until I went to Peralta Junction on Saturday and encountered a soul photographer there.

So was it true? Did photographers really steal your soul?

In some cultures any image taken may cause great distress because of religious beliefs, as they believe your reflection is your soul. If you look at some pictures of your great grandmother or possibly grandmother (depending on your age) you will notice no one smiles. There was popular belief that people didn’t like to have their pictures taken and the reason was because it stole your soul.

According to legends, mirrors when you look into them, reflect your soul and do not reflect back light that hits them. There is also an extension of the idea that your shadow is a reflection of your soul. Mirrors were considered an important part of the Mayan religion and culture as they thought mirrors opened portals into the other world, allowing ancestors and gods to pass through between the two planes. They believed when praying to a saint, the soul leaves the body. To help the soul find its way back into the body, mirrors are placed in front of saint statues to reflect back the soul. Many religions today still cover mirrors with black cloth when someone dies so the soul does not get trapped inside the mirror after death.

Most people today allow their photograph to be taken, however some still protect their infants as some still believe the souls of infants are fragile and are susceptible to leaving the body. Photographing an infant could harm the soul, preventing its return to the body. The soul is believed to be composed of thirteen parts, and photography damages or even removes some of these components and a shaman is sometimes brought in to restore a person’s soul.

I believe that photos are frozen moments of time and everyone knows first hand you do not get time back. You live for today as there might not be a tomorrow – so why worry about a disappearing soul?

Anyways, current word on the street is using a digital camera does not steal the subject’s soul, film cameras do.  So was Sears with their family photography promotions in on the soul stealing business all along; because I swear the woman below looks like my soul sister on a bad-hair day.

Linda- 1996 – 7:30 am the morning after one of her old stores fashion shows. The flowers survived but looks like she did not. Looks like her soul was sucked out!