International Day of Peace,first observed in 1982, is celebrated worldwide on September 21st annually. This year’s theme ‘Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity for All’ honours the spirit of TOGETHER. It is a global initiative that promotes respect, safety and dignity for everyone forced to flee their homes and those leaving in search of better lives.
According to the UN “TOGETHER unites the organizations of the United Nations System, the 193 Member States of the United Nations, the private sector, civil society, academic institutions and individual citizens in a global partnership in support of diversity, non-discrimination and acceptance of refugees and migrants.”
We’ve all heard of World Peace before. We’ve been hearing about it since the beginning of our lives as the correct answer to any Miss. Universe question to win the crown. You may ask however “What does this have to do with me? What does International Day of Peace do for me? Why should the UN matter to me? How do refugees and migrants get into the equation here on Parent Tales?” or “Where do I sign up for a peaceful day in my home, without my kids? This is the reason we’re talking about World Peace Day, right?” … Wrong!
As parents, we become so self-absorbed at times with our own lives, our children and our family routines, that we seldom take time to look around us and take in everything else that is going on. We choose to ignore certain stimuli and filter what we internalize, allowing ourselves to become disconnected and desensitized.
We hear the stories and news reports. We see the pictures and videos on social media. We say “Aw cuh-dear… that’s so sad,” then go back to our regular scheduled program of life. How many of us knew it was International Day of Peace just a few weeks ago, or that it has been observed for the past 35 years? Hopefully, after this year it will not be forgotten.
Instead of asking “What can International Day of Peace do for me?”, a better question to ask would be, “What can I do for International Day of Peace? In keeping with the theme of togetherness, how can this be applied to our lives? How can it be applied to our families and our children?” It is my firm belief that any behaviours we wish our beloved, little people to display, we ourselves must be that guiding light and example. To be an example of unity and togetherness extends beyond our four walls.
We need to make ourselves less comfortable, sacrifice more of our time and some of our dignity and unplug from our routines to welcome others into our space.
We disagree strongly with the mistreatment of immigrants and the building of walls along the border to keep them out (I don’t need to be specific to be understood). Pray tell, how are we any different? When last have we opened our homes to our very own neighbours, the black sheep in our families, or the relatives that we’ve fallen out with over something so petty that you can’t even remember why.
We want to keep everything for ourselves to pass to our children and in time our bank accounts become bigger than our hearts. Our cars become more expensive …but at what expense? Along with the valuables and the value of the material things, can we also leave some values as well? Love, peace, generosity, unity and togetherness.
Be an example of peace.
Peace can be defined as freedom or a period of freedom from public disturbance or war, a quiet and calm state of mind, agreement and harmony among people or an agreement to end war. How many times have you had to peep outside with embarrassment, before exiting your homes because it was just a warzone of verbal missiles targeting and never once missing the persons targeted. Within our very walls? Our own family? Our flesh and blood?
May our homes be filled with such PEACE that instead of being a public disturbance, it is a haven for all.
Dare I go on? The easiest thing we as Bajans do is complain. Why? Because we do not agree with one thing or another. These disagreements and complaints can create a disharmonious environment to operate in, what we call ‘bad vibes’ or ‘making de place real miserable.’
I am sure as individuals we can do better. We can strive to be more grateful and less of a complainer. Agreement and harmony among people! Let us make peace and not war. Take time to observe your little people. How do they react? Are they peaceful? Do they complain a lot? Do they forever sigh, whine or stupse? Do they sound exactly like you? Be sure to pass on a quiet and calm state of mind to your children. Stop making de place so miserable nuh!
Have a wonderful and peaceful day, week, year, and life! Share the love, peace, harmony and togetherness with all!
"Blessed are the peacemakers, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." Matthew 5:9
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Deborah Waldron Parent Blogger
Deborah Walrond is a daughter, a sister and a mother of two children. She is a teacher by profession, who has a love for baking, cooking, reading, writing, the beach and appreciates all types of exercising. Deborah loves interacting with people, with a particular passion for children. With God at the forefront of her life, anything that follows after is well done