Monday, September 17, 2007

The Many faces of Me -- An Identity Crisis

Each time I publish a post on my blog, I include a label at the end. The label is explicative and direct. When you click on the "marriage" label, you know you will find posts related to marriage. When you click on the "fun stuff in Taiwan" label, you'll find posts about fun stuff in Taiwan. You know what to expect, and you'll never be offended or annoyed because you can just click on the labels that you want to read about. Without realizing it, I've given myself labels too.

I realize now that these labels are really different "faces." When I'm at work, I don't often show my Christian face because I'm worried that they'll think that I'm judging them. When I'm at church, I don't always show my fun-loving, carefree face because I'm constantly worried that I'm going to run into one of those "uptight" Christians that doesn't know how to lighten up and see the humor in The Simpsons. Again, I'm the one being judgmental when I assume that most Christians are uptight. This is probably because I had a few bad experiences when I became a Christian in junior high school. The girls in the youth group that went to the private Christian high school were very snobby to me when I didn't know about all the Christian bands and Christian lingo. There I was ... listening to Blink 182 and watching The Simpsons; pondering the theological meaning of "loving on someone." To me, the phrase sounded like it was related to sex but I told myself that it must be in the Bible somewhere if all of these people used it. Geez, isn't it time I got over that? We've all matured since then, and those girls are probably wonderful, loving women now. But still to this day, I'm afraid of Christians ... and I am a Christian!

This, of course, is ridiculous. I am clearly the one in the wrong when I judge others by assuming they're going to judge me. I should give people more credit than that. My coworkers just may not hate me if they knew I love Jesus, and maybe there are other Christians out there that enjoy The Simpsons (or at least will be okay with the fact that I do). I always told myself that I created these different faces to avoid being labeled, but it was me who was doing the labeling.

Last night I was talking to my husband about this problem of mine, I asked him to remind me of who I was. This may sound bizarre to some, but when you're married sometimes your spouse knows you better than you know yourself. Anyway, he told me to just keep being Cahleen because that's who he fell in love with. Hey ... maybe he's on to something! Instead of worrying about how others see me, why don't I just concentrate on being me? I know that sounds trite, but this problem has really begun to show itself since I started this blog. You see, while it's easy to have different faces out in the world, it's almost impossible to do it on a blog. After all, I only have one blog. So for the record, yes I'm a Christian, but I still love The Simpsons and my non-Christian friends. Yes, I love The Simpsons, I have a tattoo (two actually), and I have been known to occasionally say things that I probably shouldn't, but I love God too. There. The faces are aligned in perfect harmony.


  1. I love your heart and honesty! Great post!


  2. Thank you, Sue! I was a little worried about being so forthcoming with what I'm going through, so I appreciate your comment.

  3. i was a sociology major..and i dont know if this will bring any comfort to you...but its completely normal to have different faces in different situation..there's a whole sociological field on here's the scientific view.....dont worry cahleen are a good person which shows through in every side of you......unlike me!:(

  4. Jennifer,

    Thanks for the encouragement! I agree with you that in certain situations we need to alter our behavior, but I'm worried that if I hide the fact that I'm a Christian just for the sake of not offending people, I'll never have the opportunity to share my faith with someone...which is what I'm supposed to be doing! So I guess it depends on the situation, but I always need to live what I believe first and foremost. By the way, you aren't a bad person! =)

  5. That post is precious.
    It's an important thing you are thinking about.


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