“Forgiveness is the final form of love.” ~ Reinhold Niebuhr
How do you deal with disappointment, sadness, cruelty? Mostly, those are foreign feelings to me. Or, at least I don’t let them hang around my neck and pull me down.
I get mad,
Then I forgive myself…
for being human.
Then I pull up any and all anchors and float away. I go deep into nothingness where no thoughts can reach me. I feel, and feel, and feel some more. By myself, but not alone. While adrift I talk to God. He listens to me and comforts me. I tell Him everything. He doesn’t say much, but He always smiles and loves me. He shows me what others left for Him. Some of these, Betsy, He says, are caused by you. I stare in disbelief. He shows me those things to help me to understand that everyone will hurt and be hurt. But only those who are willing to pull up anchor and go out into the deep will find the truth.
The truth is that the pain has to go somewhere. If it stays in me it’ll search for others to hurt. It’ll grow as it feeds off of the pain it creates in others. However, the whole truth is that I will be its first target. It’ll turn inward first and do a lot of damage to my well-being with my subconscious permission. It’ll manifest in self-abuse through addictions and behaviors that do anything but heal.
I know through experience that nobody can hurt me more than I can hurt myself.
Knowing that awful truth as well, He begs me to leave my wounds out in the deep before I turn back to face my journey back through the nothingness.
He tells me, in fact, that they were His all along anyways – that He bought them from me a long time ago. I wonder how that is? But I believe Him and reluctantly let go of a part of me as if it never was. He assures me that I’ll always remember, and that the remembering is a gift to me as well. He wants me to remember the choice I made to let it go – to forgive others and myself for the parts we played, and to move on.
When I return I’m a different person. I’m weak, humbled, and very vulnerable – more aware of what it means to be human in a sometimes cruel world.
And when I look around with dry eyes and patched up heart I see beauty and love.
May you see it, too.