Different, Yet the Same.

by - 2/22/2010

One thing you should probably know about me:

I am a people watcher.

All day long, everywhere I go, I watch people. I look into their faces as I pass them on the way to class; I watch people from the corner of my eye as I'm taking notes; at church especially, I stare around the rooms at many different faces. Why do I do this? I haven't quite put a finger on just one reason. I have come up with a few possibilities, though.

Firstly, I am completely fascinated with the endless expressive emotions that can occupy the human face. Every time I look into a stranger's face, I try to imagine what's going through their head at that very moment. Sometimes I even picture myself as that person, and say in my head what I think they would say. For example, today, I passed a guy who had a blue baseball cap perched on his head and a wedding ring on his left finger. His face bore the most troubled expression. I inserted myself into his mind and imagined that his wife had come down with the flu and she was home alone all day because he had to work and go to classes, and he desperately wanted to be by her side. I know that in reality he very well could've been worried about that test coming up, or the paper he forgot to write, but I like my imaginations much better.

I think one of the other reasons I like to watch people is because it amazes me how different everyone is. I see soooo many different hairstyles, clothing styles, face shapes, eye colors, skin colors, etc. But at the same time I see so many similarities too. I like to think that the majority of the people I see think about the same things as I do, at least sometimes. I like to think that though I may be going through completely different experiences than the person sitting next to me in Institute, that maybe we have something in common.

In this world, I think it's crucial to
"Share our similarities, {and} celebrate our differences."
-M. Scott Peck

As I watch people from day to day, it helps me realize that though we all have differences, we're here for the same reason. We were sent here to fulfill a purpose set apart in heaven before we even arrived. And no matter how big or relatively small that purpose may be, each and everyone of us is important.

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2 comment{s}

  1. This is a wonderful post, Ashley. I'm a people watcher as well....and it might be bad, but I LOVE watching people pray. I don't mean it in a disrespectful way at all, but I love it. Random side note--my friend is on a signing mission and she said that one of her all time favorite things is that they watch people sign while they pray.

    That quote is fantastic as well.


  2. One more thing. I was thinking about this today--The biggest reason for missing high school is because of the commons. I absolutely loved people-watching in the commons. Especially from the balcony. I wish we had a commons where people all gathered, but stopped and hung out on campus. SO BAD.


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