Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What They See

John looks at me all of the time and tells me I am "cute".

Cute? I am in my 30's. The last time he said it, my hair was in a ponytail, and I was wearing no makeup except for a dab of concealer to hide this huge zit on my face, and some mascara. I was wearing a hoodie and jeans, and had just returned from class. Most decidedly not cute. But it got me wondering what he sees when he looks at me. I see nothing but flaws, and that's okay. I know what the flaws are, but I know what my strengths are as well, before this turns into an elaborate revealing of my lack of self-esteem. I think I am a total bitch. But one of the girls at work the other day was describing me as a therapist to one of the employees in another department, and said that I care too much and try to help everyone out around me.

So...What do you do when the views others have of you is completely different than the view you have of yourself? Which one am I: the one they see or the one I see? Do I really care too much? I know I worry about what others think of me more than I should. I try not to let it define me though. At work, I try to be responsive to the needs of my patients and the needs of my coworkers. When I finish my assignment, I try to check on everyone else and make sure there is nothing I can do for them to make their nights go a little bit easier. I do this because there has never been a time when I have asked them for some help and they have told me no. When I visit a patient, I don't just do my job. If they need ice water, I get it for them. If they need help to the restroom, I do it. Nurse Aides and RNs are some of the most over-worked people there are. Not saying that I am not overworked.

I think the problem is that I hold myself and everyone else to some very high standards. I look at myself with a very critical eye. I know what I can do, I know what I have lived through, and I expect nothing less than that from myself. And if I can do it, so can everyone else.Maybe that is why I see myself as bitchy, as not-cute. Maybe I need to step back and see what they all see for a little while, to be nicer to myself for just a bit and see how it goes.

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