Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Watermelon

This is my post to get my mind off another blog post that is bothering me today. I'd link it but there's no reason to. No one reads my blog. (and possibly his) anyways.

My pictures are of my adorable daughter K. Isn't she a cutie? Head to toe watermelon attire. I guess I am one of "those" moms that delight in dressing up their child while I look like a slob. It'd be a true assessment I suppose. I tend to think that most stuff look better on a 4 year old than on a 38 year old. Especially if its fruit or any theme. I think it is probably a good thing adults don't go around wearing themed clothing. Oh wait. Maybe you do? Sorry.

Which lead me to my real post. I'm upset. A friend of mine posted on his blog "Things that bug" and encouraged everyone to write in things that bug them. Unfortunately I probably ruined his post and his fun by condemning the idea of stating publicly what one hates about others.

Its an interesting matter. Its fun to talk about the little quirks that bother you. Its fun to rant about the various things people dislike because there are so many. Isn't it good to share these things, to allow people to get to know you better? Isn't it best to voice these things instead of silently think of them?

I don't know.

I do know that often when posts like that which asks what are your pet peeves are on discussion boards, the thread starts off fun and humorous but somewhere along the way feelings can get hurt. I realize that one can't please everyone but does it help or hinder a real community when one is trying to keep track of what offends this person and what this person hates or likes.

So now I have been going about my day a bit scared of interaction with others. Its a bit silly, i know. Who cares what others think of me? But I do care. Who cares if what I say offends someone but should I care?

I desire to be inclusive. I desire to foster community. To me, and in full disclosure I am a very sensitive person and I do realize that its all my fault and not his for taking offense at his comments, but to me having others in community list things that bug them can only be a bad thing. Again, I realize I'm too sensitive. I realize that most adults will realize that they can't please everyone and just allow that person to be bugged but I am a person who will take note of what a person likes and dislikes.
And if 10 people chime in "oh yeah, I hate that! People that do that are so dumb "or fill in the adjective. And there's a person that does that and has been doing that and now realizes wow..... so everyone thinks that of me? It hurts.

My friend listed a few benign things that bug him. Unfortunately it seemed to sear me. I'm guilty of half his list. I say "People say" or "they say"... Or making fun of how a person prays. I pray horribly out loud, which is why I don't pray out loud any more. But if we are in community and are supposed to be taking risks and want community to be a safe place to take those risks and get to know others freely, is it helpful to think that others may judge me if I pray badly or if I say the word "just" or if I show up with a casserole for potluck? How can we enjoy community and each other if we are so concerned with others judging us? Of course, I do realize that others bug me too. It is inevitable to bug others, but is it right to remind people that they bug you?

Back to my watermelon girl. You may hate looking at a kid with a fruit theme on. You may think I'm a fruitcake for buying the outfit in the first place. Would you tell that to my face? What if I read it on a friends blog? What if 20 people chimed in saying that irks them too? How would I feel?

I want to never pray out loud again. I want to hide and never do anything to offend another person again, yet I know thats not possible. And now I know that even though people don't verbalize what they truly think, they are still thinking it. Does that encourage community either?

I'm at a loss. I just want to go and hide.


  1. well this is a clever way to get me to read your blog... didn't even know you put one up until I picked up in conversation the other day that you had one. Good for you!

    Now, about the hmm-hmm, question at hand... Of course I LOVE looking at your darling daughter all-melon'd out, that's too cute although the thing that is cute to some, as you say, may be annoying to others. Who cares? As long as you think it's adorable and Katie does too! Personal expression is just that; personal. When it comes to annoying behaviors, expressions or activities I personally do not begrudge the individual. the intelligence thing was humor, ergo: Brittney Spears! This can go way back to a post I put up about sarcasm and proves my point; sarcasm without consent is always hurtful. So, I apologize if my attempt at humor did offend. But what makes it so is the partial truth that we either want to change, defend or normalize in our perception. I have to admit my wife has a lot of annoying little habits, but I love her to pieces (good thing I'm not an ax-murder)! and without a doubt I have 10 times the annoying habits that "bug" her.

    Final point, I had a very good friend who had the most obnoxious laugh; I knew it... she knew it... heck, EVERYONE knew it! But after you got to know her and realized it was real and not made (or shall I say maid ;-) up it was something that became very endearing! It requires that you push through the perception and discover the real behind the surface... And THAT is what encourages community!

  2. I agree, I agree and I apologized to you already.

    Thanks for pointing all this out to me. I needed a good reminder.

  3. V ... I love your photos of K in strawberries or watermellons, and all the other things you catch her doing! Shes an adorable little girl, and the memories are captured forever and in 10 or 20 years you will still look back and say "awww how cute." One never knows, some may even make it into a wedding slide show, now isn't that scary :-)

    If we did not have charecteristics that 'bug' we would all be robots. Sometimes we need to work on things to better ourselves, and sometimes we need to relax a little. I know that I have a habit (can you say seperated plates??) and I don't think that will ever change, but I have learned to laugh about it, and if someone doesn't like it oh well. Now when there plate is all piled high, and all the food is cross contaminated, I am still working on accepting their carefree manner of food intake.

    Thanks for making me think about questions (ok and the other blogger too) that don't always have a black and white answer!

  4. Yes, Clyde. You are right also.

    But lets talk about your fear of food cross contamination.........

    I'm kidding. I don't love things jumbled together either but I know you are much more severe than I am.

    What do you do with salads? Or casseroles?