Mirror, mirror on the wall

A man taking a selfie in a mirror.

I’m not usually one to go in for ‘new year, new me’ kind of things. But, on the final day of 2018, it struck me that perhaps I should do so this once. I was putting up a new mirror at the time, so I was literally forced to reflect on myself.

We had been without a bathroom mirror since our no-longer-new bathroom was installed. Some 18 months ago! I had it in my head that I could only drill into a stud rather than into plasterboard. I didn’t know exactly where the studs were though, so had abandoned it.

Consequently, I was quite used to not seeing my own face before leaving the house for the school run every morning. And that’s not good. That’s not to say I’ve really let myself go or anything like that, but I had obviously stopped caring somewhat.

Our continued failure to move home and work slowing down during the second half of last year had got the better of me, so it’s easy to see where this apathy came from.

So, back to the act of installing the thing and I suppose I felt guilty that I’d left it so long. The old adage about not being able to look myself in the mirror if I didn’t do it rang true metaphorically if not literally.

Not wanting to enter a third calendar year without one in situ, I got out my toolbag, found a YouTube tutorial to work out where the studs were – with magnets and threads, in case you were wondering – and got to work.

Inevitably, the studs weren’t where I needed them to be unless I wanted the mirror decidedly off centre. So I had to drill straight into the plasterboard. I was terrified. Both of destroying the wall and of hitting any stray wires behind it.

Determined to get the mirror up, I made myself do it and there were no such problems. It was in place after about ten minutes. Looking at my handiwork, I had mixed feelings. I was proud at doing something I wasn’t confident about but felt ashamed for leaving it so long.

As well as feeling these emotions, I could see the latter of them staring back at me. And you know what? I’m glad of this. It provided the kick in the arse that I needed.

Clearly, I’m not in a good place at the moment and it’s not a good look on me. But, having had some tough times in the past, I know I’m more than capable of dragging myself back up again.

So, there and then, I decided that positive changes are well and truly in order. I’m chipping away at other long-neglected DIY jobs, decluttering and getting more fresh air.

Just two days in, I’m already feeling a lot more positive. Everything else will follow. We will finally move home this year and work will pick up again too.

And I can look myself in the mirror again in more ways than one.


  1. Chris

    You have highlighted the way a great many people feel, especially at this time of year. So hey, you are certainly not alone in thinking yourself as less than you once were.

    There are so many things we feel obligated to do that the pressure mounts up on top of any other worries at work or whatever. I gave up making New Year resolutions ages ago.

    Your post has inspired me to do a job I have been putting off for a long time. (wash the dog). So thank you.

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