“It’s a boo-boo.”

“It’s a wound.”

“No, it’s a boo-boo.”

“It’s a wound.”


I listen to the heated debate between two of my sons. I ask myself, “Isn’t a boo-boo a wound?” I want to jump in with this insight, but decide to stay out of it. Despite all my training and schooling, I don’t really know if there is a difference between the two, or if indeed they are the same thing.

I sigh. Are theyAre they really arguing over something so unimportant? really arguing over something so unimportant, so trivial, so small? Is the price for being right worth it? I remind myself that they are children, ages 4 and 8.

They continue until I hear one say, “I’ll show you what a boo-boo is!”

That’s my signal to jump in with my favorite tool of parenting: distraction. However, before I get the chance to stop them or even to give my opinion something else takes away their attention. The topic, the argument, forgotten.

I sigh a sigh of relief.

This discussion gets me thinking.

How many times do I either get upset or argue about something that might feel like a big deal in the moment, but upon further reflection see that the matter is really unimportant, trivial or small? Really, the majority of things are not worth the fight. They are as boo-boos and wounds.

I ask myself, “Elana, is this issue really worth the price of peace?”

That’s right, Elana, is being right, having it your way, worth the price? Or would you rather pay the same price and have peace reign in your home?

A woman comes to me, and her story flows from her lips. She’s coming for marital advice. I listen. I hear her point. It’s valid. But I want to know. I ask her, “Tell me, is having it your way really worth the price?

Maybe it is and maybe it isn’t. It always gets her to think.

“Is there a value here or are you just seeking to be right? Maybe seeking perfection?”

In Hebrew, the word for “peace,” shalom, shares the sameIs it worth the price? root as the word for “to pay,” l’shalem, and “perfection,” shleimut. So many of us constantly look for perfection, but the price for seeking it is almost always too high. Especially when it comes to peace in your home or peace of mind.

I could give you a list a mile long. Arguments between spouses, siblings, parents and their children. Arguments that are basically discussions about boo-boos versus wounds. The house might be a mess. The children might be too noisy. You want perfection at work and perfection at home. You want it done this way, not that way. You want it at this time, not at that time. I know, I know ... you get the point. Again, and again it comes back to the same thing.

I ask myself. I ask you, is it worth the price or is this just a fight about boo-boos versus wounds?