I definitely have spoken about forgiveness a lot on my blog because it’s something that I continue to struggle with. The truth is, I don’t forgive easily and I can hold a mean grudge. Probably because I love so hard and I’m so ride or die that when the ride is over, I’m seemingly left holding all the Neiman Marcus bags……………That’s just my truth for all intents and purposes and there is not a lot I can do about it but continue to grow and work on myself. Being mistreated, undervalued or taken advantage of is something that has happened to me on a number of occasions in so many relationships and friends I probably couldn’t count it at this point. And just to clear it up, it’s not because I’m naive or gullible or insecure or stupid………….things that people would likely say about a person who goes through these types of things in their lives. Truthfully, I just want to believe the words that people say and I want to hold them accountable for what they intend to do. I don’t want to start out immediately believing that they will fail me. I don’t believe that’s the way things should be. Unfortunately in life though, people do fail you whether they intend to or not and once that happens, freeing yourself from the responsibility of believing in them and their failure is the journey you are then forced to take.
Since I was a little girl I’ve been developing a tough skin. In the words of Langston Hughes “And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.” God has been building this tough skin since I arrived on earth and He refuses to let up on me. He processes me constantly. I’ve been in the fiery furnace more times than I like to admit, the lion's den during those other times...... and trust that God has heard about it! Facing the many obstacles that life has thrown, each time I come out better, strong, tougher, more aware of the world around me. But let me be clear, no matter how you come out, the process is the process and it is NEVER under any circumstances easy. It is never a cake walk intentionally I’m sure. You look down at all your battle scars and you realize just how far you’ve come and how much He’s kept you and that is the only thing that keeps you going. You keep pushing for that reason alone. You are on the next level of your life with or without those individuals who challenged your belief in the possibility that people can actually keep their word and mean it.
Forgiving people and moving forward is a skill that people aren’t always blessed with having. I honestly held a grudge against my dad up until he got sick last year and was hospitalized. I was angry with him for everything he’d done to disappoint me. I was angry with him for his life choices. I was angry at him for being the smartest, most talented, most giving man I’d ever known and never doing anything with it to benefit his life or those closest to him. I was angry with him for giving himself away to the world but not to the people who truly loved him. I’ll never forget how he would have dreams about people doing him wrong as he was getting sicker…………..saying that he wasn’t going to let people do him that way anymore. Then he was gone. Just like that. And at no point in that time period where he was accepting his new direction in life did I actually release him from his faults with me. At no point did I actually tell him how much I truly admired and adored him despite of the anger I felt. I had to ask myself after he died, who am I to hold anyone accountable for the rest of their lives for their humanly mistakes? We don’t get to do them like that because we WILL disappoint someone one day. And don’t we too want to be forgiven? My father died with that on my chest. I don’t wish that on anyone because now I have to carry that with me. I beg you not to do the same.
I always remind myself and anyone I have this conversation with how important it is to forgive. Forgive Forgive Forgive!!! It is truly the first step in your journey. You won’t automatically have less pain or hurt because you have said I forgive you………….but you will be able to move forward knowing that the first step in your process were taken with clarity and because you made the choice to do so. It’s liberating to say the least. Wounds are formed in these time periods so they have to heal. In order for that to happen you must be willing to look at yourself in the mirror and also forgive yourself for whatever role you may have played during that time. I always say not to hold yourself hostage for being yourself. For making mistakes. For being human. For loving, giving, needing, accepting, forgetting, overlooking, denying, rejecting, and refusing to see whatever the writing is on the wall you stare at. It’s okay. Life will always happen as long as you keep living it. Just always be sure that you will recover no matter what today looks like. Tomorrow is always a new day to get things right.
Lastly and most importantly, something I always want to remember and remind myself of is………..even in the time that you are growing and forgiving and healing, rely only on yourself and God to make it through that time. You can openly forgive someone and they never feel that they did anything to wrong you.
Unfortunately that’s the world we live in. Everyone isn’t prepared or in a place in their own lives where they are capable of looking in a mirror and truly accepting the person they have been to those around them.
At times it’s easier to blame others for their mistakes instead of accepting the mistake as their own. It sometimes takes years for people to see where they lacked growth and for them to take ownership of the outcome. There is nothing wrong with that. Growth is something that takes time in life. God is your absolution so allow Him to be where you seek it.
Live, Love, and Let Go!
Until Next Time Lovies!