My daughter has a new app on her phone that can clear up and enhance old photographs. She used it to make copies of pictures from my old photo albums, brighten them up, and email them back to me. There were pictures of Mom, Dad, Nana, my brothers, me and my first dog Duke. Looking at them brought back so many loving, happy memories. I even put one on my laptop computer as my new screen saver.
It is a picture of me sitting in my favorite chair, across from the wood stove, next to a cluttered bookcase full of old books. I am wearing my special Snoopy sweatshirt and hugging Duke. There is a big smile on my face and a joyful twinkle in my eyes. It was how I spent a lot of my winter afternoons as a boy, cuddling with Duke and reading an old book.
It is strange too how 50 years later that boy still lives inside of me. I still love comfy chairs, warm stoves, old books, Snoopy, hugging dogs, and reading books on cold winter days. Yet, when I look in the mirror now all I see is thinning, graying hair, age spots, and lots of wrinkles. The only thing that hasn’t completely changed in that reflection is the eyes. They are hiding behind glasses now. They are set a little deeper in my eye sockets. The innocence in them has been replaced with wisdom. But they still have that same joyful twinkle.
Looking at the little boy smiling at me from the computer screen and that 56 year old man looking back at me in the mirror can be a bit confusing at times. They seem so different. Still, they are both me. It is one of those things we have to deal with being eternal souls living inside temporary bodies. Perhaps the best thing we can do is to pay less attention to those reflections in the mirror and more to the reflections of our lives. We are all here to reflect back the love of God to everyone here on Earth. And when we do we remain both joyful and forever young.