Life, as I see it : It matters…


We usually say we don’t care what anyone thinks of us when we hear a bad thing about ourselves.

We say that it doesn’t matter, but it’s not always true.

Over the years as a news writer and as a columnist, I have had my fair share of negative press. 

In the early years of writing I cried. Naive as I was back then, I thought it was the end of a just beginning career if I got a complaint. 

Time went on, I got beaten down a few more times and then I quit crying. I learned that it matters what people think if they blatantly let you know they disapprove of you. Honestly, it hurts your feelings.

My late husband David helped me to learn a valuable lesson. If I wrote something that someone disagreed with, and they came after me about it, he said there is one question I should always ask.

“What in the article was not factual?”

I made that my mantra, and my life as a fledgling newspaper writer got better.

It matters, no matter how much we deny it, what people think of us.

This week I learned that if someone likes and admires what you do it matters even more. It makes us over-the-moon-happy when the person who likes us is also someone special in our lives.

My granddaughter Lea has begun to search the paper for my column. She reads it and then she cuts it out and saves it in a zip lock bag with many others of my columns. I can’t tell you how happy that made me; on a number of levels.

First, the fact that Lea is such an avid reader is important.

My mother always had a book going. She read to my sister Ann and I, and then to our children. 

That Lea actually searches out and reads my column is huge to me.  

It just does Grandma’s heart good to know that she cares about me and what I write.

Her mother sent to me three pictures including Lea searching the paper, finding the column and cutting it out, and then holding the baggie full of articles. You can bet I’m framing those three photos and hanging in my house.

My week was doubly blessed when I got a phone call from a reader and a friend to say how much she liked this column.  

It is important what people think of you. It is important that they think well of you as a human being. It is not important if they think you don’t wear the right clothes, go to the right places or hang with the right people. Who cares? 

If you are healthy and happy in your choices; I say good for you.

It’s less than a week now before we leave for North Dakota. Our week is filled with last minute packing, visits and goodbyes with friends and family and even cleaning the house.

We want things in order when we get back.

As for now; life is good today.

— Kathy Craigo-Harteis is a former Colusa County resident. Contact Kathy at or PO Box 838, Beach, ND 58621.