Peace or Pieces

“Acceptance is a small, quiet room”

Cheryl Strayed

I had this insatiable need to be right. To have my side of the story not only heard, but accepted as the one and only truth. I wanted the people who had wronged me to admit they were wrong and desire my forgiveness. I needed vindication. Justice. I felt we would all be much better off if they would recognize and acknowledge their inherent flaws. At that point, we could all begin to move forward.

It was both naive and arrogant of me to expect this from people. I had grown tired of being the bad guy and the enemy protagonist in too many of people’s fairy tale, made up stories. I was becoming resentful of having to tip toe and endure the emotional punishment of people who had taken on the victim role when they were clearly the perpetrator.

Jacob Braude said, “Consider how hard it is to change yourself and you’ll understand what little chance you have of trying to change others”. This is the sho nuff truth right here!

I slowly began to realize I was fighting a losing battle. I was choosing to remain shattered and in pieces, waiting for someone to help me put them back together. But no one was going to readily admit they were wrong or that they owed me. My parents were not going to admit they had failed me. Family members were not going to stop pretending they were above the fray. Old lovers and former friends would continue the narrative that they were right and I had wronged them. And there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it. I know how hard it’s been to look at my shadows, demons, and regrets and love myself back to life. It takes an incredible about of courage and fortitude to embark on such a journey. It ain’t for everybody. It definitely ain’t for the weak.

Did I want peace or remain in pieces? That’s what I had to ask myself. Did I want to be right? Or did I want to be healed? Did I want others to love me or did I want to love myself? I wanted peace, healing, and self-love. I had to accept that I was going to remain the villain to many people. I had to accept that I would never receive an apology or an acknowledgment of wrong doing. I had to leave people right where they were. I had to accept that most people would go to their grave living in denial.

I had to stop trying to prove a truth that existed in no one’s mind but my own. I had to stop fighting and start living. For me. With my happiness and peace contingent on one thing; myself and the rich inner life I was cultivating.

I had to let whomever think whatever about me. The truth could never be hidden forever, but I no longer feel responsible to unearth that truth. I couldn’t let the actions or inaction of others impact me anymore. I choose to no longer remain in pieces, but to embrace peace.

“Most things will be okay eventually, but not everything will be. Sometimes you’ll put up a good fight and lose. Sometimes you’ll hold on really hard and realize there is no choice but to let go. Acceptance is a small, quiet room”

Cheryl Strayed


Kathleen Nicole

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