Posted by Heather
In life
7Jan 10

     I like to think of myself as a nice person.  I was brought up to be kind, patient, caring, understanding, and to treat others as I would like to be treated.  Therefore, I would never intentionally say or do anything that might hurt or offend another person.  Nothing good could come of that, so logically, why would I do it ?

     Since I am that type of person, I tend to surround myself with people of similar natures – gentle, thoughtful people that think before they speak, or do things.  Therefore, the word ” forgiveness ” has rarely come up in my life.  I have no desire to do things that would require others to forgive me, and I don’t want to hang out with people who would act in such a way that they would need forgiveness, from me, or anyone else.

     Obviously, we’ve all had bad experiences in life where people have hurt us – intentionally, or otherwise, and we have all felt the pain of a friend walking away ( for apparently no good reason ) or a love from the past breaking our heart – it’s all part of the human experience.  My take on things like that has always been pretty cut and dry: I ask myself if I did anything to be treated so badly, and if the answer is ” no “, then I just figure that it is the other person’s problem , not mine. You can’t make someone stay your friend, or keep loving you – they make their choice, so they must live with it.

     Yes, these things hurt, they make you wonder what happened, why people would do these things to you, but eventually, you resign yourself to the fact that they made the decision, and you’ll probably never see them again.  Life goes on … but that doesn’t mean you don’t still think about them , or care.  After all, you weren’t the one who walked away.

     Last year, an amazing thing happened to me – 2 good friends from the past ( one from Ontario, one from B.C. ) both contacted me out of the blue, and wanted to talk, after many years of ” nothing “. Of course, I was a little hesitant at first, after having spent years not knowing what happened, never getting an explanation, and just plain missing their friendships in my life. 

     I received heartfelt apologies from both ladies, and both expressed a strong wish to re-kindle the friendship.  I thought I would feel nothing.  I thought I would think it was ” too little, too late “.  I was wrong. I was overwhelmed with emotion, and filled with such joy that these women had finally decided it was time to talk about it, and try and make things right again.  Many years had passed, and they told me that they had missed me, as I had missed them.

     I accepted both apologies sincerely, and the instant I did, I felt so amazing.  It sounds really silly, but feelings I had dragged around for years ( negative ones ) vanished immediately.  I never thought it could be that easy, but it truly was.

     We were all young once – we made decisions based on emotions, rather than logic.  These things happened such a long time ago that I could not keep holding on to them , letting them continue to hurt me. Two wonderful women, once again my friends, made me realize not only that I could find it within myself to forgive, but that it was such an easy thing to do.  I am so grateful to have these ladies back in my life – I missed them so, and I love them dearly. ( you know who you are.  )

     When you truly forgive someone, you set yourself free.

     I still have a long way to go – a lot of people to forgive for a lot of things … but at least this was a step in the right direction, and it feels pretty good.

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