When the mister bought me an early birthday present last week, something I'd been wanting, I should've been happy. He certainly was pleased with himself after this last gift. After all, it wasn't like the (I kid you not) outhouse that he'd built me for my last birthday. The one thing he thought I would want after we'd sold our getaway cottage and kept the empty back acres.
This birthday present was a stunning antique pier mirror, most likely from the 40s or earlier. A great deal, he'd paid pennies compared to what it should've cost, which really, really surprised me in itself. Brass and copper with intricate carved roses and a hammered bead scroll work, weighing probably close to 200 pounds. A gorgeous piece, it was something I had been looking for to fill our large bedroom wall.
My first glimpse of the old floor-length mirror made me feel somewhat gloomy for some reason. Maybe because it signified another birthday, another year gone. I didn't sleep well for three nights. Maybe it was because the bedroom lighting was off, the balance slightly stretched or hitched . . . I suggested new curtains. Yet, every time I looked at the birthday mirror I felt a twinge of sadness.
And since its delivery, there's been strange things happening, too. Not in the 'I see dead people' sorta way, but in the 'I'm dreaming dead people' sorta way. Not really bad dreams, but more unusual: about my very first cat, and a dead relative. Now my current cat spends time crying in front of it.
The mirror is on my side of the bed, too. Maybe that's the problem. I suggested we switch sides to sleep on. (My mister loves the mirror so much, he readily agreed).
I'm worried about the mirror's careless slanted perch, which it had been left in, too. "Let's anchor it to the floor with big screws," I suggested.
"Let's shine it," he said. (He truly loves this mirror).
We polished the mirror. Then last night, the mister, unaware of my uneasiness, said we should call the antique store and try to find out the history of this glorious mirror, so that we could date it. (He really loves this mirror very much).
When the antique dealer called back with its trace, I was (maybe not) surprised to find out that it had belonged to a funeral home from 1919 to the early 90s.
"It's not like it came from an asylum, or somewhere bad," the mister brushed it off, "and can you believe the great price?" (Told you, he loved it). My neighbor piped, "It's so beautiful and it's not like it came from a house of ill repute or . . ."
I asked the mister to please get rid of it.
Maybe he didn't take me seriously, because I didn't have my chin set right, or there wasn't enough quiver to my lips. But I really don't want to wait for him to see that chin tightening or lip quiver, or even for the white smudge sage I've since ordered, to arrive.