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Moral Character. What You See Is What You Get.

You know I could have chosen so many images to represent my thoughts and feelings about this post. I could have chosen images of my family members because they are my history. And while none of my ancestors were perfect most had what I would define as moral character. They gave in so many ways and you could rest assured that if they said they were going to do something they did. Did they make mistakes? You bet they did, but their actions showed me what it means to be humble, to atone and be healthy members of society; to give even when they had not always been given tools to succeed and were often stripped of the tools they had worked so hard to earn. But you know having said that NO ONE CAN TAKE FROM YOUR SPIRIT AND SOUL YOUR SELF-WORTH. THAT IS PART OF WHAT IT MEANS TO HAVE MORAL CHARACTER. TO KNOW ONE’S TRUTH!

I chose this image because this Man is so well known and so many can identify with his philosophy, values, and yes, moral character. He was the embodiment of what you see is what you get.

Right now at this critical juncture in the history of mankind, I wish for all of us to demonstrate moral character because we know our words are meaningless without healthy actions.

I wish for each of us to be able to evaluate what it means to be morally healthy and surround ourselves with people who are. Not because of any group or affiliation to which another belongs but because of what they do and how they behave; and if the words that are coming out of their mouths don’t represent the moral character you can recognize that too. You see for me having moral character means treating others with equality no matter how different they may look from me. It doesn’t mean however that I will accept unhealthy and maladaptive (i.e., dysfunctional) behaviors because I don’t condone being complicit in actions that harm others. I DO HAVE A HEALTHY VOICE AND SO CAN YOU!

I wish that each of you taking the time to honor me by reading this is thinking about how you are supporting the health of all mankind and ridding yourself of the space you might have given to people who don’t.

I wish that all who are reading this are evaluating how their actions are demonstrating and embodying what you see is what you get because in the end that is going to be the legacy of each of us.

I AM going to share with you personal images of what you see is what you get and what it means to rise up from nothing and to give back tirelessly even when faced with sometimes unspeakable challenges. I’m proud of where I came from and where I learned moral character and to embody what you see is what you get.

Charles S. Modlin, Sr.-“Nothing in life is work, it’s all exercise.” Proud Member of the US Navy during WWII. Father, Husband, Brother, Uncle, multiple gold medal champion and record holder as a USA Senior Games participant in every event he entered (100m, 200m, 400m, and long jump) and proud role model and citizen of his community and of the world.

Grace Hampton Modlin-First Black teacher in Henry County Indiana graduating from Ball State University with a Master’s of Elementary Education degree while raising 5 children, Brownie Leader, a supporter of the downtrodden (taking in children from neighborhoods in Chicago, IL raised in poverty to live with us in our very small and modest home several summers while I was a child), Mother, Wife, Sister, Aunt and proud citizen of her community and of the world.

Without my parents, their mistakes included, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. I wish for others to see my moral character and to know that what you see is what you get.

Now go out and be what healthy means. You have the power to do for our world what it needs to heal from so many traumas we face today.

Moral character and what you see is what you get cannot be overused platitudes if we want REAL humanity, kindness, and equality for all.


Debbie Edmunds, Licensed Professional Counselor, MA, LPC-S, CART obtained her MA degree in Clinical Psychology from the University of Houston-Clear Lake. She has amassed over 40 years of experience working in vocational rehabilitation, brain injury rehabilitation, and mental health with people of all ages, walks of life, and various cultural backgrounds.

Debbie has worked in hospitals, residential treatment centers with youth ranging from 12-17 years of age and has been in private practice since 2002 focusing on helping those ages 12 and above and their caregivers who’ve experienced traumas and who have used self-injury learn to cope and to heal.

Learn more about her practice-H.O.P.E. Psychotherapy of Houston, and her proprietary products for emotional support.

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