Thursday, March 7, 2013

The Girl in the Mirror

When I was little I had a CD with my name on the front and all the songs had MY name in them. You know, one of those personalized CDs where the name is slightly robotic, but is oh-so-exciting for a kid.  I remember LOVING the tape as a kid.  And for Christmas this year my mother gave me the CD version.  It was a lovely surprise.

This morning, I actually spent some time googling the lyrics to the song and while on my quest for lyrics discovered that there are a lot of other people in this world who were deeply affected by the music and were trying to find the tapes to have as a childhood memory (or to buy for their kids). :-)

I digress.  On the CD there is a song called "Girl in the Mirror".  Below are the lyrics to the song...

"Who's that girl in the mirror?  Who's that girl?
Who's that happy, smiling EMILY, who's that girl?
(cheesy kid lyrics about growing up to be like a family member)
Look at your eyes, look at your ears, sit around for a while,
The person staring back at you is sure to make you smile.
When you let your mind discover, when you let your thoughts run free,
You can be whoever you decide to be.
When you look into the mirror, who do you see?
All the endless possibilities you can be.
(more cheesy ideas of who I could be)

Who's that girl in the mirror?  Who's that girl?
Who's that happy, smiling EMILY, who's that girl?
Who's that girl in the mirror, tell me who!
It's that happy, smiling EMILY.
Why, it's YOU!"

When I was little that song held a completely different meaning that it does for me now.  Would I be a vet, broadway star, lawyer, teacher, waitress... And while I am still struggling on that same journey (does anyone ever REALLY know what they want to be when they grow up), this song now means something completely different.

The thought came to me as I was running at the Maplewood Community Center yesterday.  As you run around the track, you pass a series of mirrors.  I used to hate running by the mirrors because when I looked into them all I could see were my imperfections, the pieces of my body that I hate, and the slow, out of shape runner.  Yesterday, as I rounded the corner, all of a sudden it hit me.  Through Paralyzer, which was blasting into my ears, all of a sudden all I could hear was this song from my childhood.  And I couldn't help but smile.  I mean, after all, the song states, the happy, smiling EMILY!

Through the pain, the exhaustion, and the extreme hate for exercising (and running!) I felt invigorated.  When you look into the mirror, who do you see?  All the endless possibilities you can be.  And as I continued to run I thought about the 213 pound EMILY, who would never have dreamed of the possibility that I would ever be in size 8-10 pants again.  And I thought about the 180 pound EMILY (that's me now, in case that was unclear), who is working her butt off to get to where she wants to be and the possibilities of what could be.  From that moment on, every time I passed the mirror I stared into it and thought of who could eventually be staring back.  This thought kept me running.  This thought kept me going.  This thought is still rattling around in my head today.  All the endless possibilities you can be... 

So today, I will eat, exercise and live with that thought in my mind.  And truthfully, whatever the possibility, whoever I choose to be, whatever my goal, where ever I am on the journey, I need to try and never forget one of the most important lines of the song... Who's that girl in the mirror, tell me who!  It's that happy, smiling EMILY.  Why, it's YOU...

In the next couple days, I hope that as you look in the mirror this song and sentiment will cross your mind... and that whoever you see will be smiling back at you.  I know mine will be.


  1. Did you get a CD with the same songs as your cassette? If so, where did you find it???? I loved these songs as a kid.

  2. I just rediscovered my Jason tape and like you, that tape deeply influenced my childhood! I uploaded the entire tape to my YouTube channel, I can't post the hyperlink here but if you Google "Kidselebration name tape" you'll find it!

  3. OMG! I sing these songs still all the time and Im 30. LOL my mother doesnt seem to remember this cassette, but I do!!!

  4. PS: everybody you can still go to
    and get a CD made!!!! Your welcome.