Mirror, Mirror OFF the Wall

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News flash … Darby let us know in no uncertain terms that she wanted that ‘mirror donkey’ G…O…N…E!  Only once before have I seen her so frustrated and mad. That was when we had separated her from the others when during her first cycles she was downright brutal to everyone. Today she let her feelings all hang out as soon as I got out. She finally ran around to me – kicked her feet at nothing in particular – and stormed past the mirror (on the Condo wall overnight). It couldn’t be plainer … so gone it is.

I’ve been thinking about a quote our nephew, Chris, posted on his FB page….
“It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.”
– Henry David Thoreau

Darby and Bella saw rivals in that mirror. They were fascinated and agitated at the same time. They couldn’t pull themselves away from it … but couldn’t bear it either. Although it was intriguing to see their reactions – and their reasoning (like Darby looking on the other side of the wall) – I am glad to have things back to normal for them.

It got me thinking about how I see our space. How much I love what I see where we live – the trees – the woods – the open fields – the lakes and rocks – the wildlife – and village people. One time, many  years ago, I talked my parents into going for a walk with me. I so wanted to show them where I loved to hike and the charm of my new hometown. It was a strange time in our lives … so there were other stressors at work. Over the short time we were out and about it dawned on me that they were not seeing anything at all like I was … and yet we were looking at the same things. It shook my confidence a little. But then I began to think along the lines that Thoreau’s quote so aptly expresses.

Funny how that is. The beauty around us is as much ‘in us’ as ‘out’. As someone who has struggled with bouts of depression in the past I am well aware of how the mind can totally shape our worldview. In healthy times though I can shape my experience. I carry my camera on my fanny pack belt most of the time I am outside. As I look for images to save and some to share that framing exercise is a great way to focus on the beauty in our regular spaces. On FB and in other social media I like seeing the pictures that others take of their space. Sure, I enjoy the travel photos and the family photos too. But the real everyday moments and shots are some of my favourites. A great example of that is Celi Gunther’s blog – The Kitchens Garden. You really should check her writing and photography out.

I’m taking that mirror down for Darby and Bella. Rosie didn’t seem to think much about it one way or another. She carries her own frame of mind. Wise one that Rosie…

1 comments on “Mirror, Mirror OFF the Wall”

  1. That was an interesting response to the mirror. I did something similar a few years ago when I played a recording of other donkeys braying for Emma and Ramsey. They both got very agitated and worried. I found their response interesting as well, but never repeated it again. I thought of that yesterday when you posted the video of the mirror and I wondered how it would go. There are often mirrors in riding arenas and the horses have to become accustomed to them, which they do eventually. You can never tell how they will react the first time though.

    I don’t do those kind of experiments anymore as they feel dishonest to me now. I also get annoyed with people who try to fake out my dog by pretending to throw the frisbee for him. That doesn’t seem like something you do to a friend:)

    Your thoughts on perception mirror things I often think about as well. Many of the woods around me are very unhealthy and are dying off, but few people seem to notice. I get many comments about how beautiful they are and I don’t know how to respond to them. I can see the beauty, but I find it hard to un-see the reality underneath. I guess that is why I tend to focus on the small, vibrant things. I too struggle with severe depression and think a lot about how perception affects reality.

    Interesting experiment, thoughts and meanderings:) Thanks for sharing.

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