Posted by: febrile | June 14, 2008


“The poor man’s conscience is clear; yet, he is ashamed . . . He feels himself out of the sight of others, groping in the dark. Mankind takes no notice of him. He rambles and wanders unheeded. In the midst of a crowd, at church, in the market . . . He is in as much obscurity as he would be in a garret or a cellar. He is not disapproved, censured, or reproached; he is only not seen . . . To be wholly overlooked, and to know it, are intolerable”. John Adams

As I scrolled around WordPress a few minutes ago, I was reminded on this site and by the quotation I brought over, that sometimes I feel invisible, especially when I’m in a big meeting with important people. When I greet them, I look hesitantly into their eyes and if I sense blank, I quickly say my name. I smile brightly and people think I’m friendly–I am friendly–but inside I’m sinking and displaced. Not always, but frequently enough.

It’s not poorness that does that to me, for I’m not poor. Yet, though, it may be poorness, a poorness of spirit, so that I too ramble around in obscurity. Folks would be shocked to hear me say this, but then there may be others who clatter about in finery and accomplishment, who smile and tip their heads, but who ebb and wane.



  1. I liked this. I liked what you had to say, and often find myself feeling that same sense of “rambling around in obscurity.”

    I think I have moments like that. Feeling like a complete….lost one. Ebbing and waning as you so nicely put it.

    I have great days. Days where I feel like I’m on my game, and things are rolling forward. But then there are other days where I feel like the ball has rolled on without me, and I’m in the dark. I wonder how one can break through those feelings.

    I have a strong hunch that much has to do with your thought life. You become what you think about. Negative self-talk will throw you out of your game pretty quick.

    I wonder if you have that going on in some way. I bet if I took the time to retrace the connection between my feeling on top of things, to feeling invisible and waning – I’d be able to trace a big percentage of those falling moments to entertaining some sort of negative thinking. Hmmm…I think I’ll explore that.

  2. Good morning, Aaron. Thank you for your response. It is the first one I’ve received.

    Interesting thing is that I am not a negative person–in fact quite the opposite. I’m rarely, if ever, depressed, see the good in people, and am just blessed with a positive, upbeat nature.

    I wouldn’t say either that I lack in self-esteem, for I recognize that I’ve accomplished a fair amount in my life, and know that in some areas I’m quite capable. Of course I understand there to be miles of room for improvement–just saying this in all honesty.

    From my vantage point this morning, I see that I’m just as worthy as are those in whose company I feel “invisible.” And it’s not certain people–no one is mistreating me–it’s people with certain prestige and standing. Kind of hard to explain.

    Hope to hear from you again.

  3. Hi -Febrile – Understood. In my line of work I have the chance to meet with many people with power, position, and prestige. I often feel a similar sense of “who the heck am I.”

    God has a great sense of humor and irony. I grew up on a dairy farm in a small rural setting. My best friends, I often joke, were cows. Today, I find myself living in one of the biggest cities of the world (Mexico City) meeting and working with company directors, CEO’s, and upper management. (I own a small English langauge consulting company, and we serve businesses.)

    The cool thing I have learned, or that I have seen in some cases is that some of those high up people…the ones with the flashy cars, great suits, perfect faces and hair are actually quite human. In some cases, very broken. And other cases, very humble people.

    It’s not always like this…but I’ve encountered quite a few over the years.

    Hi, Aaron. I’ve heard it said and believe it to be true that all people in the bible who were used by God were in some way “broken.” I guess that is a humbling experience.

    …the best to you.

  4. Hi and welcome to WordPress; I see that you are fairly new?
    Also thanks for visiting my blog!
    I frequently am GLAD that I don’t have to sit in meetings like the one you describe.
    I am a blue collar worker yet educated. I seldom come in contact with people who make me feel invisible.
    I guess I decided a LONG time ago not to “suffer fools needlessly” and the kind of person who makes one feel invisible(for a multitude of reasons) is not worth my while, nor is in the least bit interesting to me.

    Hi, Merri. Thanks for the welcome and for visiting my site.

    I don’t believe it is that anyone is doing anything to make me feel that way. I believe it to be a problem of my own.

    It’s nothing overwhelming, and I function quite well. Just interesting to me, and I suspect others may sometimes feel the same way.

    Wish you well

  5. that is a remarkable quote.

    Sometimes I think we are so wrapped up in ourselves we forget to notice others…but they are noticing that we aren’t noticing.

    I want to do better about getting outside of my own head.

  6. Hi, Amy

    Welcome to my site. Hope you’re here often.

    Every now and then we have to consider ourselves, our actions, and strive for improvement. I know that’s where I am in my own life.

    I wish you every blessing.

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