no no Narcissus for 40 days

It is Lent once again, and rather than participate in what I call the sorority Lenten diet (giving up dessert for 40 days before spring break, so they can fit into their bikinis), I am going to try – TRY being the operative word here, considering the flop of my last attempt at a streak – to do 10 minutes of “mindful/prayerful” yoga every evening. One of my favorite conversations to have with my daughters is the “What are you going to do for Lent?” on Ash Wednesday. Here’s what my kids have come up with:

Lizzie, age 6 – clear the dinner dishes every night
Rosie, age 10 – kiss everyone goodnight (which is “blecch!” for her)
Sarah Jane, age 14, – try (again TRY) not to look at her reflection – in mirrors or store-front windows, turned-off televisions, or metal doorknobs. This, for a teenage girl is, OMG!, way difficult. But I know she’s capable of rising to the challenge. She’s allowed to get ready for school using her bathroom mirror, but after that, no face or hair or outfit checks.
Could you do it?

This excerpt from WB Yeats’ poem, A Prayer for My Daughter, helps illuminate why one might want to avoid looking-glasses.

“May she be granted beauty and yet not
Beauty to make a stranger’s eye distraught,
Or hers before a looking-glass, for such,
Being made beautiful overmuch,
Consider beauty a sufficient end,
Lose natural kindness and maybe
The heart-revealing intimacy
That chooses right, and never find a friend.”


One thought on “no no Narcissus for 40 days

  1. thronedoggie

    Rita (describing her Perfect Man): He’s got a good body, but doesn’t look in the mirror every two minutes.

    Phil Connors: I have a great body, and sometimes
    I go months without looking.

    jim p.
    …”put on your booties, campers, because it’s COLD out there today!”

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