I was reading something a friend of mine wrote on Segullah. She is an amazing person, mother, photographer, and friend. I have never met Michelle in person. But I love her. We "met" through another friends blog.
As I was blog stalking one day I saw a link and clicked on Michelle's personal blog. I suppose the timing was right and it was meant to be. There were some pictures of her son who was leaving on his mission. He was going to serve in the Italy Milan Mission, the place that Robert is serving.
I ended up leaving Michelle a message, then we began to email, text, and talk on the phone. We have never met in person, even though she lives within an hour of me. Our lives are busy and it has been difficult to meet up. I am looking forward to Robert's homecoming because I know that she will be there for that and I will have the chance to hug my friend.
Anyway, back to what I was writing about. I read the small article that Michelle wrote about her daughter, and the mean girl, and turning the other cheek. It has made me think a lot over the past few days. Have I sometimes become "the mean girl" because I didn't turn the other cheek.
I can understand Michelle's pain. Her story is personal as is mine, however, we have both been hurt by family members. A hurt so deep that you don't know if you will ever get over it and survive. Michelle's pain and hurt seem fresh and close to the surface. Mine has been years in the making, and is now buried deep down inside somewhere and it only shows its ugly head occassionaly. However...it has affected me, and the type of person that I am and how I react and treat certain people.
I almost feel sometimes like I have taken it upon myself to be the judge and jury, and to also be the one to carry out the sentencing as well. It really did make me become the "mean girl". As I look back now I realize that in the end, the only person that I really hurt was myself. Yes, the other parties involved have suffered as well, but their suffering didn't help me nor hurt me. I was indifferent to it. I only know about my own suffering and what I have been through and how I let it affect my life growing up and into adulthood.
One of the comments that was left on Michelle's page was this: “And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold; but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.” (Matthew 24:12-13) I have thought what it means to endure to the end. Several years ago I was taught an invaluable lesson by our Bishop. He told us that not only are we to endure, but to "bear it well". In otherwords, to endure it well. Enduring doesn't mean to suffer through life always complaining or being the mean girl. It means to have a positive attitude. To have faith in Christ and know that he knows us and will carry our burdens and make them lite.
In our lives we are all hurt in different ways, by different people. It sometimes is best to just walk away. To leave it alone and go on. I have done this on many occassions. My feelings might be hurt for a while, but then I get over it or try not to worry about it. I realize that I am to sensitive and take things to personally, and I shouldn't. However, like several other people who left comments to Michelle's message, there is a time to speak up. Each one of us has to make that decision for ourselves. Through prayer we can know when those times are. There are also times to shut doors and walk away, and then maybe even with time re-open the door and see what happens. We can forgive, but we don't have to let the ones who hurt us be in our lives.
I have chosen to leave the door partially open. I think of my mother and what she would want me to do and I think of her example. One of the people that hurt her the most became one of her best friends as years went by. There is always the possibility of repentance/forgivenss/mercy. I still have hurt and pain, but I also try to have compassion and love. It is an odd mixture and I am sometimes not even sure of my feelings. I try to keep the hurt buried deep down inside. It works better that way.
I hope that with time I can get rid of the mean girl inside of me. I strive to be more like Mary and her mother Michelle. To be able to walk away and befriend others and to give such solid and sound advice to my sons.