This I Believe

Shana - TULSA, Oklahoma
Entered on November 17, 2006
Age Group: 50 - 65

I believe that first impressions are the truth.

The truth is not always what it appears to be. It is concealed in the constant prattle of my brain. My first impression is safely hidden from my conscious mind, but I can have it if I ask.

What is the first impression? The one I remember or the one right before that? Yes, one mili-second before the impression I can remember, was a first impression. As a child, I could roll the truth off my tongue quickly and accurately. Mama would scold me not to tell Aunt Sara that she should shave inside her nose or mention to Uncle Bill that he could use his belly for a basketball. So I learned not to believe in my first impression but to wait just a second and go with the next one. That seemed to go a lot smoother at family reunions and on into adult hood where there were always times the truth probably would have gotten me into trouble anyway.

Here is an example, my first impression when I look in the mirror is; I love her for all her imperfections, for every wrinkle and blemish. I respect both of her chins. I see truth in her eyes and puffy eyelids. And although her hair is thin and gray, it’s soft and familiar. I adore her large ears protruding like radar detectors from both sides of her head. She looks like my mother and father rolled into one. Oh yes I definitely love her. Then the fractionated second is gone and I didn’t even notice it.

I continue to analyze my reflection as I comb my hair and brush my teeth. The first thing I mention is the extra poundage that she gained and where it settled, mostly on her hips and backside. I turn for a side view as I brush up and down. I promise not to eat any sweets today. I point out each line on her face but feel generous to allow her to look younger that she really is. I nit pick her hair no matter how it looks. Do I love her? Yes, but she should feel bad about the way she looks because what I see is the truth.

First impressions are not always as they seem. If I pay close attention, I can hear it. I don’t have to share it with everyone but I could certainly stand to know the truth in the mirror every morning.