She looked in his eyes and saw her own reflected back, pupils dilated, drowsy, sleepless and always anxious. Always darting around from side to side making sure to see if she were indeed being followed. Some demons she had gotten used to; Insecurity, the constant yearning for love, and the endless thirst for the new. But sometimes, they saw each other following the same person and started fighting for their own dominance over her, giving rise to newer devils – insecurity metamorphosed into terrible fear, love turned to self-abuse, and the new became so overwhelming that she sought the familiar. It was this being then, that stared right back at her.
She wondered for a moment if these were the same thing he saw as he smiled, a crooked evil smile (or was it her vision that was crooked)? There are a few things that are as unnerving as the cold that grips you when you see a stranger in the mirror. There is a place where anxious thoughts go to hide – the drunken stupor after an alcohol-fuelled sleep is sure to coax them out of there. Breaking out in cold sweat, she realized that there was fear – pure, raw, bloody mess of fear that was balling up in the pit of her stomach. Her hands grew clammy and in a room that reeked of debauchery, she sat up straight and looked around her. The blue of the dawn was just beginning to break out and she remembered another dawn, another day which had inextricably linked itself to a memory that was as familiar as the blue of her own veins. He ran in her, through her, but like the impure blood her body, mind, and soul rejected him. Her own folly was masked by a heroism that she sought validation from. “He needs to be saved, he needs to be pulled out of the darkness, he needs to be rescued from his own shadows!” she screamed. As true as this was, she realized that her body would not and could not withstand the immense burden that it was being placed under. It grew bloody, scars appeared where there should have been none, stretched beyond capacity her arms singed at the joints and finally gave up, falling limply on her sides. Yes, he still needed to be saved, yes, he still needed to be rescued, yes, he still needed love – but it could not be from her. She could not be the hero, she had to be the antagonist, she had to be the one who somehow brought him to a realisation that in order to love someone, you have to love yourself first, in order to be the hero, you have to learn to not say sorry for what you truly believe in with all your heart, even if it means going against your impulses in that moment.
She smiled and with a second’s delay, her reflection smiled back at her. She held out her hand and felt a warm touch from the other side. Two-way mirrors don’t HAVE to be scary, look long enough you would see that there is just another you looking back at you. And You are enough, you will always be enough.