Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through peace. Ephesians 4:3
As my body fought off the side-effects of the medications that saved my life, I stayed at my parents’ home. My husband sometimes stayed, but he hated the idea of being in their house. Every other day, I returned to the doctor to check my SED rate and follow my progress. In tiny increments, the rate dropped, and, thanks to the rest I was getting, I began to improve.
One night when my husband did choose to stay, he overheard a conversation between my father and me. I had gone downstairs to get a drink around midnight, and my father chose then to talk to me about their concern that I jumped out of bed every time my daughter woke in the night. Mom worried I wasn’t getting the rest I needed, but it was hard for me to ignore the instinctual response to my child’s cries.
I discussed this with my dad and returned upstairs, unaware that my husband had eavesdropped. I found him packing our stuff up ready to leave. He was livid that my mother thought I shouldn’t get up to care for our child. I tried to explain, but he was adamant. He was leaving and taking the baby. It was up to me whether to stay or go.
I went. Why? I knew the kind of drama and turmoil he could create because there was no way I was letting my child leave without me. Either I kept the peace and went or turned the house upside down at 1 am by refusing to go. I chose peace.
It killed me. He wouldn’t let me leave a note. We packed up and slipped out of the house in the early hours of morning. It was Mother’s Day. My first and worst.
On the next day, I had to go back by the house to pick up a few things we’d left behind. My mother wouldn’t speak to me. My father told me she had searched for a note, convinced I would have left one.
I told him I was sorry. I hadn’t wanted to leave but felt I had to choose my husband at the time. I was married to him after all.
I kept the peace in the family that had become my own.
Sometimes keeping the peace means choosing which side has peace. Sometimes, there is no option that works. I was in one of those situations. No matter what I did, someone was going to hurt. I opted for the one that allowed my family and baby to sleep through the night.
I doubt I’d make the same choice if faced with it today. Would you?