Coffee Chat: How Am I Seen?

“I wonder how many people I’ve looked at all 
my life,  and never seen.”~ John Steinbeck,
The Winter of Our Discontent
Every Tuesday, there is a Coffee Chat over at Rory Bore’s place, Time Out for Mom. This week the topic of discussion is how others see us. For me, this is an expansion of last week’s topic, “I Am Not…Your Interpretation of Me.” 

I think we often react to life based upon our past, what works for us. For some that means we react according to the way we have been treated. For others it is what they can get away with in their treatment of others. 

I have sometimes been misunderstood by the way I react to difficult situations. I don’t like conflict, so will usually hold things in. I retreat, withdraw to think things through until I can find a solution. There are times that I need space to find my strength, to work it out within myself. Once I come to terms with things, I will act accordingly. I wrote about this in a musing.
In kind, I respect others and their space. I don’t put demands or ultimatums on people, because I know how uncomfortable that feels. It is a heavy burden. I cannot make choices for others, nor do I want to. I do not want them to make mine. If there is to be peace, acceptance is necessary. I am a believer of, “It is what it is.” I have learned to accept. 
When I have been misunderstood or judged, there were times that it left me upset. It felt like a violation of both trust and respect. I accept that uncomfortable fact because I have to. I was open and honest, yet I was not being accepted. 

I am not one who plays games. I shoot straight. I am honest because I choose to be. When I do act, it is with clear vision. I believe that I will be judged by God. It is Him I have to please in the end. Until then, I have to live with myself. I have to face myself every day. I make my decisions based upon that. 

Though I hope that you do, maybe you don’t see this in me. I cannot be responsible for what you see, however. I can only be responsible for what I do. I cannot be responsible for how you react to me. I can only be responsible for my own actions. I hope that you take the time to see me as I am, not as you wish I were. I promise to take the time to see you, too. 

No…I am not perfect. I never said I was, and am the first to admit that. But, no one in this world is perfect; no one. I can accept that fact. Can you?

32 thoughts on “Coffee Chat: How Am I Seen?

  1. You worded this perfectly!! Exactly my thoughts.
    In talking to my children about such things – especially where bullying is concerned and how to not let that determine you self worth – I tell my kids: at the end of the day, you have to be okay with Your choices. Forget the bully – you can't change or control them. You can only do that for yourself.
    Let no one else decide or determine what you self worth is, or how it should be measured.
    Just the other day my 9 year old son came home feeling quite discouraged and down because of things said to him. He was in a very negative space. I sent him into his room with pen and paper and told him to only list the things he liked about himself, the he liked doing, and those people he felt cared/loved him. Of course he groaned – because Homework! LOL
    but within minutes, he was flying out of his room to update me on another positive thing he had thought of.
    When he was done I asked him a serious question and told him he must tell the truth: Did he pick on anyone else that day?
    No – he said, that's why I played alone.
    And I said – and there is your strength. You thought you didn't have any, but it takes courage to stand alone for what is right.
    He added that to his list 🙂


  2. Those of us who know you, know that this is true to who you are. Those who do not know you should take the time to get to know you … if they don't, it is their loss. Well said, McGuffy …

    Andrea @ From The Sol


  3. You are an excellent mother. The lessons you are trying to instill are life lessons. You children seem to be getting it. I am so thankful for both of these facts. Our future, as well as their own, is in their hands.


  4. I really relate to how you approached this subject. God is our ultimate judge, that's for sure. And in my opinion, when we judge others and proceed to hurt them based on those judgements we are more often than not breaking a relationship. I found your blog from Rory's coffee chat today.


  5. A great post today Ann, I can relate to what you are saying. I feel the same way as you do on how people persive me. We all see a reflection of what we persive and not what is reality and our perseption is formed by our own persived reality wether it's true or not. I'm not sure if I'm expressing the right way…

    We are not to judge others because we are imperfect ourselves…often we see in others what we hate in ourselves.

    I do not like to have choices forced on me either and i don't force choices on others either and when I give something to people I give with no string attached as I do not like the have strings attached on anything I receive.

    Truth is of the most importance to me too. To me, only truth is…



  6. What a wonderful thought provoking post today – we are very much alike and I'm getting really excited to get to meet you in person soon! I really believe I know some of my blogger friends better than those I left in the old hometown. For one thing, I have daily contact and comments from more of my virtual friends than my flesh and blood ones. Both categories are dear to me but I find myself surprised about how close I feel to those out in cyberland.


  7. OH what a BEAUTUFUL header! ALL over it's beautiful!!! OUTSTANDING work.

    I will further say that I enjoyed the blog even more than usual. I feel similarly. And I have had to try hard to reign in my natural impulse to put it right. Not easy for me. It is a learning and a spiritual journey.


  8. Thank you. Truly, I appreciate it. I love the new look. Did you see the Footer, too? Ann did an excellent job on everything. She knew what I needed and wanted.

    Yes, it is a journey. Life can be difficult, as can people. I am always trying to fix things, and make things right. I am learning that I can't always. I really can only fix myself.


  9. Ya I just like to be open and honest too and not worry about what others think because it just weighs me down and I don't think it is important what others think rather knowing what you think and what you know that you are.
    : )


  10. So nice to know how you think in some areas of your life. Maybe, I need to think how I think too and why I do things the way I do.
    Awakening thoughts


  11. Wonderful words. And so true.
    I am also not big on confrontation, although there are times they cannot be avoided, I usually dodge them and try to find another solution. It may not always be easy to see other people and not follow you urge to try and convince them i.e. change them to your own liking. But I, too, will accept people for who they are and choose to be.
    And you are right, none of us is perfect. And I believe that is a good thing. Wouldn't life be downright boring without any imperfection? 😉


  12. What a wonderful post! Too many times I try to take on the responsibility of how others feel about me in the form of worrying so what they will think. (And I sure don't like anyone mad at me.) Too often I don't do something/go somewhere/visit family for what they might think about me and my issues. Silly, isn't it? For what it's worth…I think you are one of the sweetest and most loyal bloggy friends around!


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