Chapter Seven Catoptrophobia

My name is Paris and I am an architect. Designing buildings and other physical structures were my job and being a perfectionist fit my personality. One thing is for sure, I hate mirrors.

Catoptrophobia is a fear of mirrors. It’s all started back in my high school life where I face myself in the mirror and I’m really disappointed when I saw the fat and ugly looks of me. Nasty boys bullied me and pretty girls hate me that is why I change my whole lifestyle, clothes, hobbies even my family and my work.

I want to have a life according to my plan. But there is something scary within my inner self.


People change as long as they live to escape from poverty, hunger, and desperation even cruelty.

My parents plan a divorce but with the help of my auntie, they get back together and as an old brother of my three siblings, I advise them in an organized way as much as like my personal things at work and in my room. I planned everything especially with my girlfriend but sometimes people might think that I am getting strict because of my attitude but this is me and they cannot intervene the way I was.

But things were never the same again when I woke up on a dim rainy evening lying in my bed and found myself facing different sizes of mirrors in my room.

“What the heck is going on?” but then I realized the event from the train.

I saw myself wearing large specs from the reflection until it talks simultaneously.

“Hello!!!!!! Who are you? I’m Paris……

“Hello!!!!! Who are you? I’m Paris……..

My images keep on greeting me like I am a stranger.

They continued to murmur and I close my ears with my hands.

“Stop it!!!!!!!!!!!!” I shouted.

Then the image change. Suddenly the reflection of the bats came and then explodes into pieces.

I gasp and felt nervous.

Everything went dark until someone came and the shinigami suddenly appear in the mirror. I was terrified to see him.

“ Look how you change this way. Do you think you can win this battle? Hush handsome guy. All you need to do is to face your fear from these mirrors and soon I will collect your soul. Hahahahahahaha.”

“Hey! Fuck you!!!!!!!!” then his image disappears.

You could run from someone you feared, someone you hated most but all those feelings geared toward those kinds of escape plans and it left me with no options.

I look around but there is no door somewhere… just a bed, windows and different mirrors. But when I reached the windows all I can see was the sky and heavy rain and hollow darkness outside. “Nowhere to run,”

Until I felt sudden outburst of rage inside of me like an atomic bomb that are ready to explode. I punched hard as fast as I could all the mirrors with my fist. Each has its own shape but the darkness inside of its reflection didn’t change. My fist started to feel numb, and I got my small bruises covered with a lot of blood.

I ceased and almost collapsed to where I stood.

My hands trembled.

I saw the remaining mirrors and I face it again like eternity and I saw from the four sizes of mirrors: oval, square, circle, and rectangle the reflections of my parents, co-worker, siblings, and Olivia (my girlfriend). They are all sad while they stared at me.

First, my parents started to talk.

“Look at yourself. Who are you? You’re not my son.” said my mother.

“You became arrogant, selfish and you disobey our dreams for you to become a doctor.” said my father.

I couldn’t lie to myself and I feel bad and hurt by what I’ve heard.

“But Mom, Dad this is my chosen path I want to create and design buildings and our own house. I need this personality to earn a living and give our family a good life.”

They are not listening they just stood and stared at me.

“ I hate you brother.” said my younger brother Nicholai.

“Yeah, you told us what to do. You treat us like a robot.” said my twin sisters Angelica and Veronica.

“Wait! What the hell are you thinking? I just want you to do the right thing ok? For the sake of your education and how you treated people.” I feel irritated.

They stop talking and suddenly my co-worker Andrew break the silence.

“Hey man who do you think you are? You always think you are right and every time I make suggestions you shut me down and you always believe in yourself.” He was angry and I can’t help it.

“Hey, a man takes it easy. It’s not like what you think of. Maybe sometimes I don’t agree with your suggestion but I’m not always right. It depends on the situation and how we treated our problem….

“Your impossible…… said, Olivia. She interrupted my speech. I heard her and she was sobbing complaining about me.

“How can we save our relationship when you do not listen to me? You always listen to yourself. I’m always wrong and you are right. You told me what to do and what is best for me but I’m not a prisoner Paris. You’re not my boss you’re my boyfriend. You can’t tell me what to do.” She still sobbing and her words stab my wounded heart.

I thought I cannot cry from this moment because I trained myself to be strong and stiff but I was wrong. For all of what happened to my life, I believe that being a perfectionist can save me from being bullied and people and my loved ones can accept me for being me without concealing myself to someone else for the sake of love.

  It is not a sin but I take my confession while I’m crying.

I realized that behind those what happened in my life. The monster who destroyed the inner self of a good and simple man was me.

I am the villain and the dictator who killed my conscience for all those years to reach my dreams. But I didn’t look around and couldn’t accept the fact that the greatest happiness was the love coming from those people who truly cares and supported me in my best and in my worst.

I ask myself.

“Do I really make a monster of myself?”

I was totally blinded by the hatred and guilt created by the cruel expectations of the people.

I am not the person who supposed to be me.

Now, I feel pity in myself, I shadowed everything especially my feelings toward my girlfriend.

“I’m so sorry Mom and Dad. I’m too selfish and followed my ambitions without knowing how much I hurt you both but I have my own life. Saving other people’s life is far from my chosen path although I helped people in some other way but forgive me for what I’ve done. I just want our family to stay together especially my siblings. I want you to feel safe and do the right thing so that I’ll give you all advice every day to remind you everything not to make you a robot but to tell you how much I love you through my concerns. I’m sorry.” My voices came to rattle.

I saw a wide smile and tears in their eyes but I stared at them.

“ Andrew…I’m sorry man sometimes I don’t listen and I believe in myself that I was right all the time. My beliefs and pride blinded me but I’ll fix it and take your side I hope you forgive me….and Olivia I'm such an idiot. I treated you as mine and grip you so tight and I knew you can’t breathe in our relationship because of my strictness but you see I just want us to be safe and I find some ways to fix our relationship I’m sorry but you know that I love you.”

All of a sudden my family, co-worker, and Olivia passed the mirrors and go outside. They hugged me tight and Olivia kissed me passionately as the mirrors disappeared.

I breathe easily and the sun shines from the sky. All back to normal and I stood from my bedroom alone.

The phobia was gone and I won from this battle.

Thank God.

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