“Blessed are the peacemakers . . . “.
Today in church, the pastor talked about this passage from within Matthew 5 – the Beatitudes. He spent a considerable amount of time contrasting peacekeepers as compared to peacemakers. I have to confess, I tend to be a peacekeeper. That is, I tend to go with the flow, try to appease people, avoid conflict. In contrast, a peacemaker is honest and true to herself.
It is interesting that sometimes I try to convince myself that my willingness to avoid conflict is being selfless, but that is a lie. I am simply trying to make my life easy. I so want to avoid conflict that challenging the status quo would bring.
I think that my issue is that sometimes I feel like I am just insisting on getting my own way; as if it is all about me. That is clearly wrong. I need to be willing to meet people halfway; I don’t always have to get my way. I guess what I am learning is that there are some times that it is okay for me to insist on my way; there are times that it is appropriate to take a stand. Often, I am reluctant in even these cases.
My grief process is a good example. In the process of grief, it really is okay to be about me. There is nobody who has suffered a greater loss when it comes to Christopher’s death. My grief process is uniquely mine; there are no rules, there is no way that it “should be” done. There is no book. This is my first life experience that I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy.
I find it odd that so many people tell me that they don’t know how they would deal the loss of a child and they are right; nobody knows until they have to experience it. At the same time, however, I am often left feeling judged for the way that I am dealing with it, as if somehow I am doing it wrong. I know that they don’t mean it that way (and perhaps I am just particularly sensitive in this area since I don’t know if I am doing it “right.”), but if they listened to themselves, I think that they would be surprised or maybe even embarrassed.
I have come to believe that this is a process without end. There will never be a day in my life that I don’t wish that Christopher were there; a day when I don’t miss him. This is a good thing because it reflects how much he is loved. Grief is something that I simply need to learn to live with. I trust that it will change, that the pain will not be so intense on a daily basis, but it will always be there.
I pity the first person who tells me that it is time to “get over it.”