Chasing Contentment

Monday, August 6

I've been working on my August pledge, and I have to admit that I'm astounded at how often I casually toss about less than positive statements about myself. I think promising not to has made me more aware, and that, at least, is a start.

One thing I am good at (I think...see, I have this self-doubt thing) is sensing the truth about people (which, in theory, would be a real asset in my current job... if I didn't keep hoping people would do the right thing).

An older gentleman who was on faculty with Mike at our former place of employment was one of my favorite faculty members to work with, hands down. He wasn't universally loved (but, then, who is?), but I just adored working with him. He was professional but flirty (which I admit to enjoying), capable and caring. I always felt such warmth from him.

He and his wife (also a teacher) spend many of their summers in China teaching English, and he sends out a Monday Memo each week, updating family and friends. I am flattered to be on the recipient list, and I am humbled to read of his love for his wife, of the caring they show to those around them, of how they show Christ in their daily lives. And I'm proud to have judged his character correctly.

Also in our former school, there was a man with an initial image that was very prepared and professional. Time, however, showed a different side. I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was, but my friend, Linda, and I agreed that when things began to change in earnest at that educational institution, he would be at the head of the change. He would be the one who wasn't to be trusted.

And there were plenty of people who thought we were nutty. But we were right.

I was reading Corrine's blog post earlier about the complexity of being a parent and having uncomfortable feelings about a friend of her children's while also remembering how it felt as a child to have a parent disapprove of a friend.

When I was a teenager, my parents disapproved of my dearest friend, LeeAnn. I had another friend who they very clearly preferred. I was forbidden to see LeeAnn on at least one occasion.

I haven't spoken to their favorite in years and years. But LeeAnn is dearer to me now than she was when we met 23 years ago. Twenty-three years!! I've enjoyed her friendship for longer than some of my co-workers have been alive!

And I'm quite sure that it's because I saw something in her, even then, that was precious and enduring. And I am proud of the teenage me who saw that then and of the grown-up me who respects it now. She is one of those people I am humbled to call 'friend.'

So, in terms of being more positive about myself, I'm a good judge of character. And that's something.

[  posted by Chel on Monday, August 06, 2007  ]
[   5 comments  ]


5 Comments:

Great post! What an awesome skill to be blessed with. And it's nice to see you pat yourself on the back just a little bit. Thanks for the link, by the way. Have a great day!

By Blogger Corinne, at 6:37 AM  

Well, thank you. I'm trying really hard to work at seeing the really lovely things about myself.

By Blogger Chel, at 4:30 PM  

Chel, this is something that I feel I have a good grasp on, too. People's character. But sometimes, I can just as easily be walked all over, and that part stinks. So maybe my problem is just being TOO accepting and open to people? Anyway, I, too, am happy to see you give yourself kudos for something. I think that's a huge (great) step :)

By Blogger it's me, Val, at 11:48 AM  

Before we moved, our employment situation was pretty bad, and I had been reduced to not really trusting anyone other than my close little circle. In general, though, I tend to assume people are going to be honest and do the right thing, which is way too often not true.

My supervisor at work says I need to toughen up, but I don't much want to do that. I'd like to keep the part of me that believes people can do the right thing.

By Blogger Chel, at 12:23 PM  

One of the reasons I love you..you believe people will do the right thing. I am proud you are being positive.

Go Chel!!!

Love Mandy

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:21 PM  

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