The art of forgiveness


“If you want to forget something or someone, never hate it, or never hate him/her. Everything and everyone that you hate is engraved upon your heart; if you want to let go of something, if you want to forget, you cannot hate.”
C. JoyBell C.

When it came to marriage or any serious monogamous relationship, one of the greatest deterrents for someone like myself was the inability to forgive. I grew up in a household chalk filled with grudges and unspoken words of grief and betrayal.  I saw what these negative and destructive actions did towards my parents and siblings.  As I grew older I continued to see mistrust, misgivings, heartbreak and anger with other married couples and it warded me off taking this huge committal step.

I did notwish to co-mingle in any of those toxic feelings again. I wanted my freedom. Craved it!! I wanted to experience life and everything it had to offer: adventure, free love…independence.

Of course the military wasn’t exactly the best teacher for healthy relationships.  I saw infidelity all around me.  Their were casual hooks ups with other soldiers within my unit, men visiting “Mamasan” and her girls at the local village bar.  At 18 years I was a novice at love, with life.  It sort of hardened me towards trusting someone fully with my heart.

And as I grew older, my focus was primarily on my daughter and gaining an education.

As a single mother I knew I had to continue bettering myself and provide a loving/stable home.  I enjoyed college, being young, carefree and winning over people with my positive energy and really just loving life.

Financially it was tough, but I persevered knowing something better was around the corner when it came to finding the “perfect” job and the “perfect” man. Of course neither exists.  Life is what we make of it and we can take any job, any relationship, and with a little hard work make it all work.

Yet marriage eluded me and rightly so.  I continued to find misgivings about such a commitment. I saw how couples bicker about the littlest of things, perhaps a culmination of mistrust and boring routines.

“I have always found it odd that people who think passive aggressively ignoring a person is making a point to them. The only point it makes to anyone is your inability to articulate your point of view because deep down you know you can’t win. It’s better to assert yourself and tell the person you are moving on without them and why, rather than leave a lasting impression of cowardness on your part in a person’s mind by avoiding them.”
Shannon L. Alder

What I think couples lack is knowing how to forgive and move on. They dwell on past misdeeds or indiscretions, unable to let go of the betrayal and hurt.  Partners or spouses are unable to move forward because they lack compassion or perhaps they feel “stuck” in a relationship that really is going no where but are afraid to let go because they feel, “this is all there is.” If your partner or spouse continues with said behavior, doesn’t change then yes, it’s time to let go if all other avenues have been exhausted.    You need to realize what is important to you may not be important for that person.  Don’t fool yourself into thinking they’ll change. Before you know it 5 or 10 or 20 years can slip away and your life, this gift, will be filled with a toxicity of regret. So, please please remember this:

“Before you can live a part of you has to die. You have to let go of what could have been, how you should have acted and what you wish you would have said differently. You have to accept that you can’t change the past experiences, opinions of others at that moment in time or outcomes from their choices or yours. When you finally recognize that truth then you will understand the true meaning of forgiveness of yourself and others. From this point you will finally be free.”
Shannon L. Alder

 

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