I once had a staring contest with myself. I wanted nothing more than to look into the eyes of the one person I hated most and bear deep down into his soul and see what he was made of. Would I be looking into the eyes of a real motherfucker or would I be staring down some chicken-shit nancy boy? I wasn’t entirely sure either, but what I did know is shit was going down and it was going to go down now.
So there I stood in front of the mirror. This was it, this was the showdown. At first I coolly looked myself dead in the eyes. I immediately noticed how stubborn I was. Why was I doing this? Regardless,I refused to break eye contact. I started to notice the details of my eyes. The almond shape, how judgmental they appear at first glance and the overall darkness were the first few moments focus. I started to notice the wrinkles I had accumulated over the years. Then I started to look deeper. How wild eyed I must appear at times? The irides both big and brown with a light hazel ring around the very edges. A dark rich brown much like a dark chocolate or a healthy shit. I could make out the stroma and I noticed how much it reminded me of a sea urchin the way it expanded and contracted. My cold stare was now focused on what could be considered a warm embrace at times. A look that could possibly warm a lover’s heart. Could I be caving in?
What seemed like minutes had passed. My eyes were watering, tearing, as I held my gaze. I was not about to give in. I was too far invested to cash out now. There was a slow searing feeling as my eyes began to sting from the tears. I wanted to blink desperately. This was crunch time. Time to see who is who. I focused on the blackness of my pupils. The emptiness. The void within. Hollow. I fixated on this and began to wonder how many people do this? How many people can? It’s no easy task to look oneself in the eye, to be able too look into the windows of your own soul and see all your features. Your cracks and crevice reveal your moments of selfishness, weakness, strengths and beauty within. We take so much time studying others that we forget to study ourselves.
I swam in the black pools of my eyes for what seemed like eons. I had finally felt the calm. I had let go. And with that I blinked. I snapped back into reality only to realize that only fools have staring contests with themselves. This endeavor was no-win situation at best.
Perhaps, I had lost… Perhaps, I had won.