Fragile Expectations

I have been blessed with many things in my life, and I have been empowered with opportunities and help when I needed it, just as I have been lucky enough to receive challenge and adversity when I was sinking into complacency. I haven’t always appreciated especially this latter fact very much, and certainly never while it was going on, but the truth of it is… I know deep down how fortunate that makes me.

I could tell my story in one way and offer plenty of cause for sympathy and compassion. I could tell it in another and make myself a target of derision and contempt. Tell it in a third and I might inspire either pity or admiration in those who’d choose to listen. There is no point to this, save to say that we make ourselves heroes and villains as we need to in life. We all tell our own stories in the way that makes us appear as we need to be seen. Or at least, we try to. The world around us though may not agree. And so, the complications begin…

These past couple of days I feel that my life has been enriched. Little things have made big differences, and it’s been wonderful see the smiles on people’s faces and hear the excitement in their voices … all because of something I did. It’s a good feeling to be able to make others happy and cause positive ripples in their lives, and it’s a feeling that invariably inspires the wish to do more. To me that is a great accomplishment, not in me in particular but in anyone who puts themselves out there to empower and help others…

Still, it is the great irony of life that even in such moments … there are others who would take a different perspective, and protest the things I have neglected, ignored or perhaps postponed in order to do as I did. And they might be both accurate and entitled to their objections.

One story. Two perspectives. Unmet expectations.

I am no hero. I am no villain. And yet I am both.

It is a fragile self-image that insists so stubbornly on itself that it leaves no room to listen. But no more fragile than the one that listens too much.

Fragile Expectations

8 thoughts on “Fragile Expectations

  1. absurdoldbird says:

    Mmmm… it’s curious how our words and actions can be so differently interpeted by others. It’s for this reason that I have to, often, stand back and realise that whatever I say or do, I’m going to be regarded as wrong in one person’s eyes and right in another’s. All a matter of interpretation. I don’t know about you, but I spent a huge amount of my earlier life, worrying about how I was coming across to people and always trying so hard to do the ‘right’ thing, when in fact, it’s impossible to know the minds and hearts of everyone else. Much better to take life a moment at a time.


    1. Scattered Rayn says:

      Hi Val,

      Thanks for another great comment… and you’re right I think. It is all about interpretation. I want to believe that there is room for it – room for interpretation… for misunderstandings and differences of perspective and opinions. I want to believe that one can do what one feels is right and best and be assessed for the intention, and not purely the result. Provided of course that one is also willing to take heed of the actual result and learn from it – regardless of whether one got it right or wrong.

      Sometimes though, I am not sure if there is actually room for that. Sometimes it seems that the result is all that matters – and since even that is subject to interpretation… it eventually comes down to what is desired. If people WANT to find fault they will. If they want to understand they will ask before judging. But it takes a willful act to grant, create and accept that space… and sometimes I feel like perhaps it’s becoming increasingly harder to find it.

      But then perhaps that is just my OWN skewed perception… saying more about me than about the rest of the world 😉

  2. pajamadays says:

    I loved your statement about how we can be both the villain and the hero in our own lives. You are so right, it all depends on what perspective we are looking through. It is a way to “justify” our actions at times, isn’t it? I am really enjoying getting to know you through your blog.

    – Emily

    1. Scattered Rayn says:

      Thank you – and yes, I think it is. Actually, since I posted this I have had the urge to go back and edit it, because I keep feeling like I left out a part. It is true that we can choose to be heroes or villains… but we can also choose to be victims, and somehow that distinction seems significant to what I intended to say with that piece. 🙂

      I am really glad to know you’re here reading. Catching up with the latest from Pajama Days has become part of my morning routine, along with breakfast and checking email when I get into work… it’s a great way to start the day! Thank you for writing!!!

  3. Scattered Rayn says:

    Wish I could be there to experience the atmosphere live! Must be such a blast!!!!

    I love the tribal fireplace analogy… it really does seem very fitting. Something to ponder, for sure!

  4. thanks so much, our boys Bafana Bafana need all the encouragement they can get but we are fully behind them. Will be going down to the local to cheer them on with all the other south africans later today. looking forward.
    i do love how we can span continents through words. i always say the net has become like the old tribal fireplaces of the old days where we could sit around and exchange wisdom with each other. it is truly a great gift of today. look forward to welcoming you to my blog, way down south ;).

  5. i am so glad i accidentally stumbled upon your blog and love all that i am reading in it.i often look at my own life and how my own story has changed as i have healed and become more conscious (some of the time). it really is about perspective and one of the charms of age i believe is the ability to see yor own life story from a different perspective and to start seeing others, whom you may have judged harshly, from a more compassionate viewpoint.we can never know what the true story really is, and often it is the truth in our hearts that must guide us. please keep on blogging and reminding.
    ps. we had winter solstice down here in africa last night, i do like solstices, a good time to take stock.

    1. Scattered Rayn says:

      Thank you so much – for stopping by and for the encouragement! I love how words manage to span the globe so effortlessly to bring together people who might not otherwise have ever “met”, and it means so much to me to know that what I write here has meaning to others. Thank you.

      I’ve only been able to quickly skim your blog, but I will definitely be going back to read more! “15 minutes with a man…” totally caught my eye and I can’t wait to read more!

      Good luck in the World Cup against France today! I’m rooting for you guys!

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