The reflection is your truth. It’s who you are and how others see you. We use the mirror to monitor our appearance and critique it based on cultural standards of beauty, finding endless flaws and imperfections. We see wrinkles and forget we earned them. We see laugh lines and forget how lucky we are we found humor, probably in something ridiculous. We are the harshest judges and the worst critics and fail to see the powerful woman staring back at us.

You'll see her if you look long and hard enough. You’ll see the woman who raised a family singlehandedly. The one who gets emotional when everyone is in the same space and realizes she created this masterpiece of imperfect art. You’ll remember riding the turbulent waves of motherhood and weathering the storm with your sanity and life jacket barely intact.

You’ll see a woman who loves her friends and would bury a body six feet under the earth for them if asked. This is where the laugh lines began and this is where they will end. These are the women who accept you as you are, call you out on your stupidity and will forever be your ride or die. They define loyalty and reside deeply within your heart.

You’ll see a woman dedicated to strangers, giving care and compassion to people she doesn’t know. The same one who missed celebrations with her own family but when she was present, she cheered the loudest. She’s the one wearing scrubs, always exhausted, but never forgetting her purpose.

You’ll see sadness for all that was lost and happiness for all that was gained. You constantly vacillate between the two but never let sorrow win.

You’ll see flaws, many of them. Lack of patience. Unwillingness to forgive. Trusting in no one but yourself. You’ll see the scars both mentally and physically and instead of feeling like a warrior for surviving the battle, you feel damaged and broken. You’ll see more failure than success and yet, you’re still standing. Bloodied and tattered, but here you are.

You’ll see a woman who has never been anyone’s priority, until now. It’s her. She’s her priority. You’re finding your balance and giving to people the same energy that you receive. You’re not giving one joule more.

You’ll see regret for the choices you made and the time you wasted. You feel hurried now to accomplish all of your goals.

You’ll see a woman who can wear pain like the grandest of diamonds but you finally have clarity, seeing everything as it truly is. The distorted funhouse mirror is shattered and this is you. A perfectly imperfect woman.

Socrates was right. The unexamined life isn’t worth living.