Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Their Stories

I've had this strange fascination lately.

It's the people in my pictures.

Not the people I know.  The people I don't know.  The people in the background.

For example, when we went to Disney World last year.  Lots of other people ended up in my photos.

Like this picture from Epcot where Jeff got pulled in to participate with an Itlaian street entertainer.

I see this kid and a guy behind him with an identical smile that I wonder... is that his dad?  What about this was so entertaining to them? Do they always find this much joy in things?  

 And who is this?  A somewhat grumpy teenaged older brother?  Or maybe someone secretly wishing they could get out of their own skin and also enjoy the show and silliness?

 I think about the people I know...

You wouldn't know by looking at her that my friend is sometimes struggling to maintain balance as she works her way through seminary.

You wouldn't know by looking at her that my friend who just loves people uncontrollably also suffers from a terrible lack of self esteem.

You wouldn't know by looking at him that he lost his wife a few years ago.

You wouldn't know by looking at her that her husband is a cancer survivor and she discovered amazing grace within herself through that struggle.

You wouldn't know by looking at him that he was struggling with unemployment and fears not being the man his family needs him to be.

We all have a story going on behind our faces, our vacations, our shopping, our errands.  Putting ourselves into someone else's shoes... imagining ourselves in someone else's pictures... maybe that can help us be a little more understanding when the waiter isn't as fast as we want him to be on refills or a little more forgiving of someone who cuts us off on the highway or a little more grace filled when dealing with a frustrating person at work.

The world would be a different place if we could look at people and just be aware of all the things we cannot see.

sig jan 2014 photo owlsig.jpg

1 comment:

Karen M. Peterson said...

I think about this from time to time. The fact that each of us has a story. That each of us has stuff going on and a whole life that the rest of the world doesn't know about. I wish we all (myself especially) would spend more time thinking of others and understanding others.