Put Down The Gloves

Several years ago, I brought my then five-year-old daughter to the doctor for her annual physical. She was due for a couple of immunizations, and I was trying to find a delicate way of answering her repeated question, “Am I going to get any shots?” I managed to avoid answering the question directly with responses like, “I’m not sure.” and “We’ll see.” When the moment of truth arrived and the nurse walked in with a tray containing two needles, my daughter buried her head in my shoulder and started crying and screaming, “It’s gonna hurt!” over and over. Wisely, the nurse proceeded quickly to give her the shots. It was all over in about 15 seconds. However, my daughter, consumed with her fear, just kept right on screaming, “It’s gonna hurt!” Finally, I gently hugged her and said, “Honey, it’s all done.” Immediately, she stopped crying and said, “Oh.” giggling with a mixture of relief and embarrassment.

I think that story illustrates well what we all tend to do after our divorce is over. Divorce, and the period leading up to it, is such an intensely emotional time. We are consumed with defending ourselves, fighting for what we believe is right, and dealing with the emotional fallout of life shoved into chaos. For many of us, it is hard to switch gears when the divorce is finally over. We tend to keep swinging like a punch-drunk prizefighter long after the bell has rung.

Put down the gloves and stop the cycle of anger, bitterness, and resentment. It’s the only way for healing to happen and peace to return. And don’t be surprised if your former spouse follows your lead and becomes more civil and cooperative in return.

A person gains honor by avoiding strife, while every fool starts a quarrel. – Proverbs 20:3

Originally posted 2014-12-31 06:00:17.

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One thought on “Put Down The Gloves

  1. It is sad.
    After Vatican II, Sacraments and Mass are the center of Catholic life.
    I do not see announcements in the newspaper about Catholic activities or summer schools. I do not see catholic people walking door by door talking to people. I do not see catholic people coming to the nursing home of my father.
    I do see the usual group of people, good people, going through the motions of recitations along the Mass. But I cannot see the Liturgy.
    A priest commit horrible crimes against innocent children, he is quietly put aside, bishops and lawyers go through the motions of litigation and settlements, eventually Reconciliation will happen and the priest will go quietly ahead receiving and giving Sacraments in his way to sanctity…
    It is sad.
    A man marries a woman. Both are catholic. Both believe. One is divorced. None can receive any Sacrament; not even Reconciliation.
    About the abusive priest, Jesus said: “But whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drown in the depth of the sea.” Mt 18:6. I couldn’t find anything as harsh in the cases of divorce or other sins related to adultery. However, Mother Church does not share Jesus’s ideas of what sin is more serious… The abuser can reach forgiveness, the divorced people living together not even can have Reconciliation.
    Something is wrong in the spiritual life of the Church, and it is not because of the divorced people.