Shild… What. A? This is the German word for turtle. My German co-worker taught me this word. I am a turtle. Or probably I am a hermit crab or snail. Schnecka. This is the German word for snail. I’m sorry. I don’t know the German word for hermit crab.

What’s your point Michelle? My point is I have a very hard exterior, but my insides are very delicate and squishy. I’m a tough nut to crack. Please indulge me for a moment.

When people look at me and assume I’m mean or miserable or angry or any of a thousand other things they think I am just because I don’t have a smiling, sunshiny face, think carefully before speaking to me. Just because I don’t have a look of sheer joy or amusement on my face, doesn’t mean people should ask me if I’m going to bite their heads off. That will surely turn my cloudy look into a stormy look.

I’m extremely sensitive. Don’t people realize that’s why I have the stoney disposition? I guess they wouldn’t because they take one look at my stormy face and think I’m something I’m not because they’re too afraid to ask.

All. My. Life. I’ve had people tell me cheer up, you should smile, you should be tougher, you need to be less sensitive, you need thicker skin, why do you look so mad, smile! All my life these words have made me want to pull my head further into my shell. At least when I’m alone I’m free to be me without worrying whether my facial expression is offending someone.

I’m tired of apologizing for not looking the way people want me to look. I’m tired of apologizing for not being little Mary sunshine. I’m tired of apologizing for being me.

I’m just me and I wish people would stop assuming things about me. You don’t even know me. I’m a real person with real feelings. Stoney look or not, I don’t make it my life’s mission to make other people feel bad. If I say or do something wrong, I apologize. I’m not perfect. I never claimed to be.

At least I know God loves me. He says he loves me. He says I’m fearfully and wonderfully made. He says he knew me before I was born. He created me just like he created the rest of you. I’m not supposed to be anybody else.


His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20


2 thoughts on “Schildkroete

  1. I have just the same problem, Michelle. I’ve never had a smiley face, so people think I’m glowering all the time and unapproachable. When I do something crazy like putting on a red white and blue wig to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee last year they can’t believe their eyes. ‘He can have FUN??? He’s HAPPY!’ Yes, indeed … and I’m smiling all the time inside. I guess it’s an infirmity we just have to live with.

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