Monday, July 26, 2010

Get Real Monday

Growing up, we are always taught 'not to judge a book by its cover', but how many of us can say we really practice this on a daily basis?

I will raise my hand and admit that I am often quick to judge someone on first impressions. Just last week, Antonio and I went to vote and while we were standing in line I told him that I wished they would provide pictures of candidates beside their name. I said that because there are just SO MANY people on the ballots right now and I can remember a face better than a name. Antonio thought I wanted to vote based on how the person looked. Truth be told, there were several sections that I didn't vote at all because I didn't feel that I knew enough about the candidates...or couldn't recall who I wanted to vote for and given a picture, I may have been tempted to vote anyway based on looks. I know this is so wrong, but I am sure I am not alone.

Anyway, I guess this voting day situation got me really thinking about how easy it is to judge people when we really have no clue what they are going through or have been through. I started thinking of people I know that have gone through so much, but by looking at them, you would never know.

Let me share...(I will not be sharing names of course!)

1. I have a girl that is a newer friend to me. She is just beautiful, successful, kind, etc. I was thinking of asking her to go to the pool with me one day, but then I started thinking how 'perfect' she probably looks in a bathing suit since she has never had kids and she is just beautiful. While I still plan to have a pool day with her, we did lunch a while back due to rain. Sitting there, we started sharing some things and she told me how she is currently going through a divorce. While that is horrible, she had just discovered 2 days earlier that her (soon to be ex) had a girlfriend, the SAME girlfriend from the time my friend dated him, ALL thru their marriage (10 plus years), and currently is still with this same girl. Can you imagine!?!? She gave up having kids to be with this man because he didn't want any! Here I am thinking about being insecure around her in a bathing suit and she is talking about how she feels the last decade of her life was wasted. (Trust me, I am not proud to admit this.) She told me that she is such a wreck from all of this and can't seem to eat because of it all.

2. We have a couple at church that we hang out with from time to time. Their son is the same age as Tatum and they play well together. That being said, he is a handful. I keep him in my class on Sundays and he keeps me busy. Other teachers often stop by after church to ask if this certain boy is there because they tell me they can tell how my class was based on if he was present in my class or not. I have learned to work with him, seen what his parents do to get him to mind, and I usually don't have too many issues with him, but at first, I would look at him and think how his parents need to do some disciplining at home. (Again, I'm not proud to admit this because I know my kids aren't perfect.) Well, one time that we were hanging out with this couple, they opened up to us about how they actually had a son that was born before their child now. This first son was born with heart issues and was rushed hundreds of miles away as soon as he was born in order to have surgery. This first son passed away at 17 months and they didn't think they could have more children....physically due to age. You obviously know that they ended up having another child which is the one that everyone talks about. Through hanging out with this couple, I know that they realize life is short and they aren't going to sweat the small things. Their family enjoys life.

3. Just today, I logged onto facebook to see that one of my sorority sister's husband passed away. She is younger than me. We talked more in college, but I just keep up with her on facebook now. I can't imagine losing Antonio now. Heck, I can't imagine losing him in 50 years. Yet, here she is, 26 years old, and already a widow. As time passes, you won't be able to LOOK at her and see what she has gone through and experienced in her short life.

4. Another friend of mine who is married with a wonderful family who seems to have the perfect life shared something with me the other day that shocked me a little. She was telling me that she dealt with lots of emotional and physical abuse in her first marriage. She said that it was so bad that even though her first marriage has been over for almost 20 years, she still deals with some of the issues to this day. She was telling me that everytime she sits down to eat, she can hear her ex in her head telling her if she eats she will get fat. Ugh!

Writing this blog, I know this is probably more for me than any reader, but I figured it may make others stop and think for a minute about this too.

"Be quick to judge yourself and slow to judge others."


Precious Moments said...

Excellent...I sure wish we would all think like this ALL the time. We would be so surprised ya know...glad you did this today. Love you girl

JRH said...

preach on!