I know we talk about protecting our peace, but how often are you truly protecting it? How often have you allowed any ole person to speak on your situation? How often have you expected a person to speak encouraging words to you, but received the opposite?
These are some of the questions and comments that came up from family members during the first few days when he was in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU).
- Should you have called the ambulance?
- Aww Poor baby
- Why can’t I tell anyone?
- What happened?
- What caused it?
- What else are they doing?
- I’m so sorry for him
- I’m sorry
To someone on the outside looking in, these may seem reasonable things to say or ask. They may even seem harmless. I’ll be the first to admit, that I’ve even said some of these very things to other people before.
But when it was my turn to be on the inside, it gave me a whole new perspective. Not just on life, but how we perceive things. It showed me that these typical things were not what I needed to hear at that time.
So I turned my phone off and I just prayed. I needed a source of encouragement. I needed to hear positive words. I needed to be lifted up and not brought down by the things that were out of my control. That second day, I was telling one of the nurses how overwhelmed I was by everyone who had an input. She made it plain. Share what you want to share the way you want too. Don’t allow them to pressure you in anyway because this is not their child. He is yours. Do what is best for you. If you want to give updates that’s okay, if you don’t that’s okay too. She said she had a family who did updates via text.
Once she said that a light bulb went off. I created a quick group text with a few family members and a few friends. I made it clear, that I will only be providing updates via text. That I am not looking for anyone to respond back with any commentary and that I was feeling overwhelmed by everything. I had to protect not only my peace, but my peace of mind.
By creating this boundary, people knew the expectations automatically. They knew what my intentions were and they respected it. I had one person say something about the updates and I kindly reiterated that I am simply exhausted. I know that family is family, but family can also be overwhelming.
Take the time to set the boundaries that are needed for your peace. Don’t allow what they think, do or say to have that much of an impact on you that you stop taking care of yourself.
Keeping your peace of mind is not just for those who are in tough situations with a sick child. This is for every area of your life. Let’s do a quick inventory check of the company we keep. Are they helping you to have peace of mind? Or are they apart of the problem?
- Do you have a support system or tribe?
- Do you have a person(s) who you can go to for encouraging words?
- Or is your circle full of people who are always telling you what you aren’t able to do?
Be mindful of the company you keep. It’s one thing to be realistic, but it’s another thing to have someone who will pull you down. It’s a better thing to have a person who will uplift you through the good, the bad and the ugly.