Forgive, Forgive, Forgive

From Anonymous:

I’ve been thinking a lot about why I might be the way I am. And to be honest. When my parents got divorced it felt like the world ended. I know it was hard for all of us. But my mom didn’t even acknowledge me and my dad was too sad to spend any quality time with me. I would clean the whole house just to get my moms attention and all she did was come home and go in her room and lock the door. Fast forward… my freshman year at high school. I have to switch schools as a young girl when high school girls are so mean and rude. I didn’t eat lunch for weeks. Sometimes I went to the bathroom cuz I didn’t know where to sit. Eventually I made “friends” but the town was so gross. Dramatic people everywhere. Thankfully after graduation I said good riddance to to that place. Today the situation with my dad is so hard. He daughters my stepsister more than me. If I ever knew it would be this way I probably wouldn’t have moved here. All I wanted was more time with my dad. I adore where I live. It’s beautiful and I can’t imagine leaving here. But the alone feeling has I guess just become a part of me now. I love my dad I always will love my dad. The people he surrounds himself with I don’t know how I feel about them.

– Anonymous

From Me:

Dear Anonymous,

Here is something I would please like you to consider… I hope you can read this, then close it, then read it hours later, then close it, and read it again. 

You are not your thoughts.

I know I know, that probably sounds overly simple and almost offensive to hear. If it seems simple, try looking closer at what that really means. Sam Harris suggests if he could only offer the world one sentence, that would be it. Maybe those things happened to you on your path, but they are distant memories now. Every single person in life experiences things that hurt. Including all the people you mentioned above – life has hurt them in some way too. I promise things have hurt me that you have no idea about and you will never understand. And similarly, I will never understand how it felt to be you in those situations. But I do know that if you, or me, or anyone, hangs on to the trauma they feel in the past, then you can never recover. You have to forgive everyone, and move on. All humans make mistakes. Including you. You hurt other people too, right? We don’t mean to, but it happens. 

So here is the big question – what is your plan to process these emotions and move on?

Do you want to email to me regularly? Do you want to talk to a therapist? Or, do you feel like you are gradually working toward forgiveness on your own, and you just need more time?

I normally do not quote the bible, as I’m not religious, but I do believe it contains some very powerful verses – here are a few on forgiveness… 

For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.”

“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.”

“And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

“Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.”

Please consider the beauty and wisdom in these words. Everyone gets hurt, and everyone hurts other people, and it is really really hard. Life is hard for everyone. Everyone! Therefore we must be compassionate even to those that hurt us. All humans. It’s not easy.

I feel you and sincerely hope you can find a healing path. Please consider everything here and reach back out when you are ready. I look forward to exploring this with you.

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