Part 2 of forgiveness continued from yesterday

And I think with each realization, I began to release that fear a little bit more, and a little bit more. I tried it again the next day and the next. Until I finally felt like I was able to really let go of all of the angst that I felt about school and the way things happened when I was younger. I decided it was time to try something bigger.

Figuring out a way to forgive someone who I didn’t know, as my uncle’s murder case had gone on unsolved, was a very hard thing to do. I didn’t know his face or his name. I just knew that in a matter of seconds he sent more fear through me than anyone I had ever met. He took away the most precious gift we have. He was callous and cruel. And forgiving that seemed an impossibility and probably not a necessity. But somewhere in me, I knew that I had to find a way to stop letting fear rule over me.

I honestly don’t know that I have completely let go today, although I feel that I have. I’m fairly sure that since forgiveness like most things is probably a continuous process the fear will reemerge from time to time. But what I was able to do by saying that I was letting go of all of the hurt and fear that you’ve caused me over my life was to take back control of who I wanted to be. I was no longer going to be scared with so much of me stuck in place by the actions of that person. I wasn’t saying what happened was okay. It was not. It was and will always be a horrific, unnecessary act. But letting that act interfere in my life by continuing to worry, hate, and fear was no longer going to happen. My uncle was not living in fear and hate anymore. He is no longer bound by such human emotions. He simply exists in love, and to honor him, I should try my best to, as well.

Maybe it’s easier not knowing who to blame. But there was a time when I would look at everyone and think, “It could have been you.” Or I would refuse to look at anyone, because I was completely unwilling to let anyone in at all. To be in the place I am at now, where I’m no longer afraid to live and look people in the eye is amazing to me, because sometimes I was worried I’d never get here. The place I am at would have never been possible without the option of forgiveness. Forgiveness gave me the means to take my life back. It was able to help me restore my joy and my ability to love. It has truly made all of the difference in the world.

Even when I do have moments where I go back and I feel like I did back then, they are fleeting. I know they won’t last even when I’m experiencing them. That is the most wonderful change of all I think. Living in happiness, feeling worthy of what I have is something I hope I never trade in for fear again.

As for the boy I loved, I forgave him initially a long time ago. Maybe it sounds pretentious and maybe sometimes it didn’t seem true, but the day I asked for the rainbow, I had also asked for forgiveness. I wanted it for me and for him. And my experiences with him are the most prominent reminder I have that those moments of unforgiveness do reoccur, but I always have the capacity to utilize my self-control and refuse to allow any of the things either one of us have done in the past to keep me down.

At my very core, I wish him the best. I want him to believe in himself and to experience all of the wonderful things there are to experience here. And although for a time it felt like it was necessary for me to be there and see those things through with him, I did finally get to a point where it doesn’t matter if I ever know. I don’t want those things because I want to be with him. I want those things because I refuse to be angry and upset with him. That only stifles us both. I want them because he’s worthy of feeling this joy and chasing his dreams, too. With forgiveness I can choose love over fear.

When it comes to forgiving myself, it really is a challenge sometimes. What we have when working internally is the insight that we knew better ahead of time. When I made choices that were not consistent with the things I wanted in my life, it was always hard to feel like I should be forgiven for those choices. But when it came to forgiving myself for putting Jack in the position he is in, that was the hardest thing for me to do. We label someone a liar after only one lie, but how many truths must a person tell to be labeled honest. The negative is just so easy to hold on to.

Sometimes I still go back and note that I really did know ahead of time that I could do things differently. I didn’t have to listen to what the people around me were saying. I didn’t have to listen to what his father was saying. I had the chance to say no. And I didn’t. I gave in. I let go. And I hurt the person whose life I was responsible for. I cried many, many times trying to think of how it could even be conceivable to forgive myself for that. I wasn’t asking Jack to. I knew that was far too much to ask of him. But I also realized that keeping that guilt and holding onto that self-contempt was unhealthy for both of us. We both needed me to be the mom he deserved, and the only way to do that was to choose to let go of that pain.

I had to forgive myself, because holding onto something I couldn’t change was irrational and detrimental to our progress. I was determined to love him. I was determined to be the best mother I could for him. And to do that I had to choose to forgive. Sometimes I do still get a little overwhelmed, but I know how to bring myself back to where I need to be for us both. Back to forgiveness. Back to self-worth.

I promise not to publish such long posts again. But I had a lot of people asking me about forgiveness and if they thought it was real, or if it could truly happen, and I felt it would be good to just go ahead and post the chapter, because it does matter. It does happen. It is real. And it makes all the difference.

About laurenc129

I'm a mom. Sometimes my hands turn orange. Other times I write. On twitter: @laurenc129

Posted on June 7, 2012, in babies and bugs, family, June 2012, relationships and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 18 Comments.

  1. Last September I found out my uncle had died. In 2005. I informally found out that he had been sick, which was the cause of death.
    However, he had been away, never contacted us since 2003. My friend and I drove to where his ex-wife lived, asked around her neighbors if they’d seen him. It led us down a road of tracking down my uncle’s former employers and they all only knew small details – he worked here, around this time, and then went to work for X. So we went to X, and so on.
    Until the last person he worked for, when we went to speak to, said “I don’t know who that is, he never worked here.” We asked “But Y said he did, that he got sick and you took him back into town?” He just coolly answered “No, I don’t know this man.”
    The following few people we spoke to all said the same thing, that my uncle had in fact worked for the person claiming he didn’t even know him.
    My uncle had been found on the streets, sick, with a bruise on his head, in a coma. My gut feelings are rarely wrong, and even though I can’t prove it, I feel this person he last worked for had hit him and being sick, my uncle didn’t recover anymore. He died in the hospital a few days later. He never came out of the coma.
    There are so many people who could be blamed, for so much here. My uncle’s last employer, city hall, the police, who have identified him for “not finding” us, his family so we could bury him…
    And I’m not entirely sure I managed to forgive just yet. But I’m working on it.

    Thank you so much for your blog post. It’s interesting how I managed to find it right when I really needed to read it!

    • Wow. I’m very sorry about your uncle and all of the events your family has gone through. That is truly difficult to go through and to get through. I am glad the post was helpful. And I’m glad you found it. I hope things continue to improve for you and your family. Thank you for taking the time to stop here.

  2. So glad that you are finding your way to maintaining the act of forgiveness!!

  3. Congratulations! I’ve nominated you for One Lovely Blog Award!
    http://wp.me/p27eXb-7z

  4. I am all for long posts – it takes as many words as it takes and the best thing about writing is – no one can interrupt you! 🙂 There is sooooo much healing in writing it out, nailing those thoughts and revelations down to allow your subconscious to relax and let go of holding on so tightly to those deep rooted thoughts in fear that if you let them go you won’t be you anymore. Not so, as you are learning, as I am learning, the more you let it out, the more you share, the truth rises to the surface, the answers you are seeking are buried under all those thoughts. I think of my mind sometimes as this non-stop talk radio station repeating and reliving the traumas trying to make sense of them … and I find that when I put them in writing the radio effect slows down or even finds some silence – now that I know where they are, I can come back to those words anytime I want but I don’t have to carry them around with me everywhere I go … and that little bit of space from your thoughts gives you time to see more objectively when you return – you can HEAR yourself, you can answer your own questions. The magic of blogging it out allows others to heal along with you and find the courage to heal themselves as well. Let it out, Girl. Let it all out. We are here to catch you.

    • Haha, thank you! And I have a section dedicated to the importance of writing in my book, because I completely agree with what you said. Having something to come back to and look at that is tangible is essential, even if it is because we are going to change direction. I really, really believe in the power of writing. 🙂

  5. Change My Body...Change My Life

    Not a long post – a quality post. Thank you for allowing us inside.

  6. melissafieldd

    Wow, thank you so much for sharing!!! That was really honest and engaging. I loved reading the whole thing and really connected to what you are saying. I have also written a book about finding our sense of self and self-worth. I was thinking lately I would love to find more writers who are working to inspire other people also, and I’m so glad I came to your blog. I can’t wait to read your book. Thank you again for your courage to share!!!!!

  7. La la la la la I’m still not reading… I’ll wait to read about this in your book 🙂

  8. Sometimes I have found that to say what one wants to say without leaving important facts out, the post is a little long …I have done that several times… but then I write what I need and want to write and began blogging for myself basically and that others read them…is a plus…In any case what you’ve said is so true…forgiving oneself and being angry with some choices we make is very natural I think…but learning to do so in necessary. As long as your son feels the love that you have for him..he will realize your worth and his, and appreciate all that you offer him…You are a very good mother….Diane

  9. I don’t mind the long posts at all. This was powerful and raw, and even though I don’t know you, I appreciate your honesty.

    “We label someone a liar after only one lie, but how many truths must a person tell to be labeled honest.” —SO true.

    Thanks for sharing.

  1. Pingback: Forgiveness Your Way Never Works « Earthpages.org

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