The Past Persists: Forgiving

This daily prompt arrived just in time for the post I’ve been pondering for today! I’ve noticed when I let my mind wander a few specific memories always come into play. They’re never happy memories that I want to relive and they’re never of people I particularly want to remember.

They’re situations in which I feel guilty. Like I somehow failed those people or myself. Situations that make my chest tight and my emotions flare up in a warning hiss to think about something else.

My therapist long ago suggested I forgive them and myself. Especially myself since I can’t control how people react or think. I agreed. I should. I would. A year later I still haven’t been able to.

Not for lack of trying I assure you. I just don’t know how to forgive the big things that happened. I have said I forgive a thousand times but then names come up and I spiral back down into a pit of guilt, regret, anger, and frustration.

Saying doesn’t seem to be enough but I don’t know how to physically do act of forgiving.

After some brainstorming, I decided to start small in my journey to forgive as it ties in seamlessly to absolving the anger in my life. I mean that was the plan when I wrote A Hundred Tries with More to Come. Well here is one of those many tries I promised. Usually, I’d run to the nearest topic specific self help book, speed read it, and start trying things haphazardly.

This time, I’m simply going to follow my intuition and take baby steps to reach my own closure.

I am writing letters. Three to be precise. One to Red, one to Midnight Black, and one to Me. I’m not using their names to respect their privacy.

Writing letters is cathartic in a special way. You can express the deepest thoughts directly to someone without ever having to reveal yourself to them. They never have to know what’s in that letter unless you want them to. If they read these there’s little chance they’ll know it’s them. Some close friends will know who I’m writing to but that’s ok.

I’m posting each letter separately today. I’ll update this post with links to them as well for ease of reading. Link Red is updated.

I don’t need to feel guilt for other people’s feelings and actions anymore. I don’t need to feel responsible for how they chose to treat me. I can let go of the weight I’ve been carrying around with me knowing that I may not have acted how I would today but I was doing my best at the time and learned from it.

That’s all I can ask of myself. All I can ask of anyone.

To Red

To Midnight Black

To Me

— Read on

2 thoughts on “The Past Persists: Forgiving

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