Thursday, February 17, 2011


Is it wrong that I notice people and wonder what their story is? Maybe that’s not the right way of describing it. (I wish there was a website were you could type in your “definition” of a word and it would give you a list of possible matches. If you know of one, let me know!) Maybe what I mean is, is it wrong that I wonder what’s going on behind closed doors? (Not in the sick, voyeuristic way, but in the metaphorical way.)


image credit


Let me explain.


A couple of weeks ago, I went to my daughter’s D.A.R.E. graduation. (As much as I appreciate what the program is trying to do, I’m so glad it’s over. You can read about why here.) Anyway, toward the end of the little “ceremony” they had, they played a slideshow of photos the kids had taken of each other while eating lunch or during recess. They were cute and sometimes pretty funny because it was just a bunch of kids being kids and being silly. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I have limited patience and a group of kids being wild and silly is not my cup of tea. But these were pictures so I didn’t have to live through it, I just got to enjoy the smiles on their faces. But I happened to spot another mother in the audience during the slideshow and she was expressionless. Practically scowling. I didn’t see her crack a smile, laugh, or even lift one side of her mouth to show she was enjoying the pictures. I don’t really know her all that well, but since her daughter and mine have been in the same school together since Kindergarten, ours paths have crossed. She always seems to be somber, unapproachable, and almost hostile. I have also seen her husband at the school on occasion and he seems very different than her. So then, I can’t help but wonder, Is he cheating on her? How is he able to be happy when he has to be around such a grumpy person? Odds are he’s probably not, and who knows, maybe she’s a wild sex goddess in the bedroom and carefree and fun at home. I don’t know and it’s not really my business, but still that nagging thought is there.


Another example. In my subdivision, there is a nice house (and when I say nice, it’s looks nice from the outside. I’ve never been inside.) The family that owns the house just bought it and moved in last summer (I believe.) Yesterday, when I was coming home after dropping my daughter off at school, I saw a For Sale Sign in their yard. Me being who I am, wondered why they were moving so soon. And I proceeded to come up with a list of reasons why someone would sell and move out of a house they had so recently purchased. But, what business is it of mine? Why do I need to speculate their reasons for moving? I don’t. It doesn’t affect me at all.


For a while, I kept telling myself that it wasn’t a big deal that I was doing this. I mean, I don’t usually share my curiosities. And I told myself that most people probably do this. But then I started wondering what people see or think when they see me.


image credit


When people see me, do they see a friendly person trying to do good for her family? Would they suspect that I’m actually scared and lonely and at my wit’s end?


Do they see a young mother unable to control her kids or do they give me the benefit of the doubt and assume I’m trying as hard as I can?


Do they think because I have a nice house and truck that we got an inheritance and spent it all on that? Or would believe my husband worked hard to earn what we have?


Do they see a confident young woman with the whole world ahead of her? Would they wonder if I’m actually crying out to be seen?


Do they see someone who is modest and a goody two-shoes? Would they ever think that I’m actually craving more sex with my husband, but is too afraid of rejection to go after it?


Do they see a young woman? Would they ever guess my actual age and then add on thirty more years for the age I feel?


So maybe it’s not such a good idea to try to see what’s under the surface. There are things behind the masks probably better left unseen. Maybe I shouldn’t spend so much time wondering about what’s happening inside other people and just focus on what’s happening inside me.


I know this is a little different post than what I normally do and I don’t really know where I’m going with it, but getting it out of my head somehow clarifies my thoughts. Let’s just call it some mental cleansing and leave it at that.


  1. From my experience, what limited experience I have, people are relatively the same. We all have our insecurities, small or big. No one is perfect.

    "Hugs" All we can do it try our best to be who we want to be. It doesn't matter what other people think of you. All that matters is what you think of yourself. For what it is worth though, I think you're awesome.

  2. Thanks Hero. It really does mean a lot.

  3. I think the same exact type of things. I even blogged about it a while ago. I think you're as normal as anyone else.

  4. I agree with Hero, we are more "alike" than what we all think.

  5. I think "normal" tends to change wherever you go. For instance in New Hampshire, "normal" human beings would be described as rednecks/hicks. In Massachusetts, "normal" would be described as having shitty driving skills. This could just be my opinion, but like Hero said, we all have our quirks, and nobody is perfect.

  6. I absolutely do this, and my husband thinks I am nuts. Maybe woman are more inclined to look deeper. I almost do it as a thing to pass the time, and to look for connections. We are all just trying to get along in our lives. I also imagine people as cartoon or talking animal characters, but that is some mental illness for another day.


  7. I think everyone is naturally curious about other peoples lives in their own way. Some people more so than others. Then you get the people who couldnt give a shit about anyone but themselves. I think we who are the curious ones tend to be more sympathetic to humankind. It is a nice way to be.
    Although, we can't get into the trap of asuming anything. For as the saying goes "Asumption is the mother of all f**kups". There is always a story behind everything we do.

  8. hahaha. I love that people say "as normal as everyone else"...I don't think there is a normal...but yes I believe we all think those things. Unfortunately we're often powerless to influence how others see us, especially people we have no actual interaction with. I like to think the best of the people I see and just hope they do the same...but truth be told I'll never know if they don't...and it's their life they are ruining with negativity...not mine. So chin up and just smile knowing that if they see that they'll most likely think you're the awesome person we get to see here daily.

  9. I do the same thing where I'll look at people and wonder what their story is. It's why my favorite blogs are just about people and the things that happen in their daily lives.

    I cannot imagine anyone looking at you and not seeing you for the lovely, wonderful person you are, dearest Hannah.~

  10. Thanks you guys. Sometimes my insecurities rise up in a most unflattering manner.

    George, OT, & Suitor, it's reassuring to hear I'm not no more crazy than anyone else out there. :)

    Onion, I think you're right about women are more likely to look deeper and it made me wonder is it because we're maternal or gossipy? Cause I'll admit that I've been both on occasion. And I'm anxious to hear the people as cartoons story some day. :)

    Alittlesprite, you're right about assumming too much. It can be a dangerous trap.

    Jewels, as always you're too sweet. You're right I can't change how people see me, but it might be funny when I'm in a situation where someone might be watching me and judging me to call them on it and say, "I know you're probably thinking..." Just to see their reaction. :D

    Kat, I'm so glad you understand. It does make for good blogging. :) Thanks for the super kind words. It means a lot.

  11. I often look at (not into) windows of houses at night and wonder what their families are like. Is there a light on in every room? Is there one upsatirs, and one down? Did they have dinner together? Are they all watching TV? Or, are they just too lazy to turn off all the lights?

    These are the questions that plague me :)

    I had a girl (who barely knew me) once come up to me at work and tell me that I was the mother she always wanted to be. *snicker* She has no idea... :)

  12. I catch myself wondering about people sometimes. You wouldn't believe the way I see married couples interact with each other at the store...I have to wonder sometimes how it works. Or what it's like to live that way.

    I think everybody does it sometimes. People can't help but wonder about things. We can't help being curious.

  13. So kind of you to list me (First!) on your award list. Made my whole week. You are on my list too, hope it sends some folks your way. :-)

  14. Ummm...also, the people as cartoons isn't one story. It's everyone. Mostly my college professors, but also people on job sites I worked on. Everyone really can be aligned with an animal, cartoon or storyline if you watch long enough.

  15. Julianna, I sometimes do that too! Especially the really nice houses. I wonder what grand things they're doing or if they're just hanging out like my family does. And wow, what a compliment from that girl. I always try to put on a happy face when I'm out in public with the kids, but I haven't had anyone say they wanted to be like me yet. You must be doing something right!

    Chanel, I'm glad I'm not the only one. My mind boggles at some of the different couples I've witnessed. From they way they treat one another to simply how they look together.

    Onion, I read your list of 7 things and laughed my tushy off! I think I'm going to try turning people into cartoons. It could make for good stories! :)


Thanks for stopping by and reading! Sit back, grab a drink and visit for while. I love the company.