March 16, 2006


This subject seems to be on my mind a lot lately - so maybe I just need to blog it out so that I can make some room in this overworked brain of mine for current events.

As defined by

1. The act of expecting.
2. Eager anticipation: eyes shining with expectation.
2. The state of being expected.
1. Something expected: a result that did not live up to expectations.
2. expectations Prospects, especially of success or gain.
4. Statistics.
1. The expected value of a random variable.
2. The mean of a random variable.

OK - That doesn't cover the word as I use it - really. Let's look at the Thesaurus and see what we find.

Main Entry: positive thinking
Part of Speech: noun
Definition: positive attitude
Synonyms: bright outlook, bullishness, cheerfulness, enthusiasm, great expectations, hopefulness, optimism, Pollyannaism, rosy outlook, silver lining

NOW - you would think, given that last bit that I, Tammi, the queen of the silver lining would be all about expectations. But I'm not. Oh, I'm always trying to find the good (don't always succeed, but I sure do try). But I never EXPECT to.

You know how I define expectations? As an obligation. Period. If you EXPECT someone to do something, react a certain way you are almost obligating them to that in your mind. If you EXPECT a certain outcome you aren't being positive, you are being presumptuous. Period.

Probably the word I hate MOST in the English language is OBLIGATION. I hate it. No one should be OBLIGATED to do anything. If you have a job you are RESPONSIBLE to do that job to the best of your ability. If you are married or in a relationship, you should WANT to do what is right by that person. If you are a parent, again, you are REPONSIBLE to take care of those children.

To me an obligation is a burden. Something you dread. I pray to the good Lord above I never become an obligation to anyone. Ever. I think if I ever thought that had happened it would hurt worse than anything.

So in my mind, expectations and obligations are joined at the hip. I don't expect and that way no one feels obligated. Simple isn't it? And I have found it makes those things that people do, those sweet thoughtful things so much sweeter. They are unexpected. They are a gift.

I'll tell you what - the quickest way to piss me off is to take me for granted. Once that happens I'm gone. Period. As much as I don't want to be an obligation to someone else, I refuse to allow someone to make me feel like I am obligated to do a damn thing for them.

Does that make me selfish? Does that make me shallow, because I take things as they come? I don't think so. It helps to manage hurt. It gives me the freedom to really appreciate people and events. And to feel appreciated in return.

So tell me - am I off in my thinking? Am I living in some kind of alternate universe? Because, I'm tellin you - this works for me. It really does. What about you?

Posted by Tammi at March 16, 2006 07:16 AM

Hmmmm... don't have an answer for you right now. My definition of expectation was "a pectation that has ceased to be." I'm going to have to study on this, and get back to ya!


Posted by: That 1 Guy at March 16, 2006 08:09 AM

I don't have an answer for you either.
But I'd like to rant on the topic a bit if I may.

People have a lot of "expectations" for me.
It drives me frackin' nuts. I hate it.
I just wanted a simple, normal, 9-5 life.
But nooooo - a brief conversation with me and suddenly I'm expected to use my talents to help improve their life.

On of the things I hold precious in my memory is that dinner party at your home in Florida. No one there expected *anything* from me. I was just welcome, accepted, and interacted with. It's a precious memory I still cherish today. No one knew who I was or what I had or what I was capable of. I was just me. I only have 5 photos I keep out - that's one of them.

Posted by: _Jon at March 16, 2006 04:28 PM

I'M SORRY! I'll return the pan! I tried once, but the wife forgot it!!!!

Posted by: Contagion at March 16, 2006 08:44 PM