Avon and Nova

Maeve RobbinsOctober 12, 2023

I remember the first time I realized I had become a reflection

Avon had just gotten home from the hospital and his dad thought it was funny to hold him up to the mirror and go,

“Look look, there’s a baby trapped in the mirror!” I would have to copy his confused little face, oh- good times.

Avon was such a good kid growing up, kind and smiling. Always happy to be up and moving in the morning.

I’ve spent my entire life following him around through reflective surfaces.

A rain puddle he was splashing in, his reflection in the school bus window, the mirror as he got ready for school in the morning or for bed at night.

Watching and mimicking as he carefully brushed each and every tooth before rinsing his mouth with his Minions mouthwash.

But then he had grown older, grown arrogant and self absorbed.

Now he starts his day by flexing his muscles and I’m forced to copy him. His ego is bigger than his stupid muscles.

He takes those stupid shirtless mirror selfies and I can’t help but feel violated as he’s really taking a picture of me shirtless.

I never used to have a problem with being shirtless in front of him as we have the same body, same face, eyes, nose, and muscles.

But he’s changed and I don’t like being his reflection anymore.

I’m forced to follow him around all day as he checks every reflective surface to make sure his hair is in place.

Forced to watch through the reflection of his screen as he taunts and teases people online.

What I wouldn’t do to be able to stop him.

To reach out and slap him hard across the face and set him back to normal.

Back to the kind kid he had used to be.

And yet here I am stuck as a hopeless onlooker, forced to copy his every move for the rest of his life.

Maeve Robbins is a 16-year-old writer from Virginia.