This morning, I had a dental appointment and had some leisure time before heading out the door. When I put my magnifying mirror toward my eye to put my mascara on, it reflected my forehead, and let me tell you, I was suddenly looking at a whole landscape I didn’t know was there. Sure, I knew lines were forming, but damn—it was like a woven field! There were main horizontal lines of varying depth, then finer lines in between, a few little inverted puckers, a warp of vertical indentations, and a few diagonals to keep the pattern interesting.

It looked so much like fabric—a really heavy, textured fabric. I had a job once where I looked at fabric samples off the loom. I had to look for flaws and the pattern repeat and make sure the yarn was in the right order. I had time to turn my mirror in different angles, and I pictured all the events of my life weaving those lines. Life isn’t consistent, so I wove my forehead in a custom-made pattern with no pattern repeat.

We’re born with our fingerprints, but this is a tapestry of our making. The loom has been running through every snarly look, every laughing fit, every worried night with a sick child, every phony “hi” to people we don’t like.

If this forehead art is a collective result of all the events, how can we call parts of our lives good, bad, or wasteful?