It’s Time to Forgive Yourself for What You Did
You did a bad thing.
You don’t even want to discuss the bad thing because it hurts your soul to hear it spoken aloud. It eats away at you each day, and you mentally whip yourself every moment you’re awake.
You hurt someone you love more than anything in this world.
Perhaps you betrayed their trust. Maybe you lied. Maybe you cheated. Maybe you broke a promise that you were supposed to keep. Maybe you broke a vow that you made before your friends and family, and God or whomever you pray to.
I don’t know how you hurt them — and I don’t need to.
You know, and that’s enough.
You know, and now you’re punishing yourself.
You know, and now you’re letting yourself become their punching bag. You’re listening to the yelling, and you hear the same words over and over again — you hurt me. How could you hurt me? How could you do this?
Apologies slip from your mouth, and tears spring from your eyes — and you mean the words of sorrow with every fiber of your being.
And yet, it’s not enough.
The anger is still there, and the hurt is still there, and the wounds are still open and raw. You struggle to keep your head above water, and you brace yourself for the next round of emotional punches — and they keep coming, with force.
You understand the pain that your beloved is in, so you take it. But there’s a part of you that’s starting not to be able to withstand the blows anymore. There’s a part of you that cannot stay above water — your legs are tired, and your body is tired, and you start to think that it would be easier just to let yourself sink, for the thought of trying to withstand one more blow is far scarier than sinking to the bottom.
You made a mistake, and you know this.
You made a mistake, and remorse courses through your body like the blood that runs through your veins.
You made a mistake, but it’s time you start to forgive yourself, too.
Forgiveness is a tricky thing, and all too often, we fall into the trap of thinking that forgiving means forgetting. Spoiler alert — it doesn’t.
In an article in Greater Good Magazine, forgiveness is discussed as such: a conscious, deliberate decision to release feelings of resentment or vengeance toward a person or group who has harmed you, regardless of whether they actually deserve your forgiveness.
This includes yourself, too.
Release yourself from punishment. From constant berating. Remind yourself that you made a horrible mistake, but there is a difference between making a horrible mistake and being a horrible human — and you are not a horrible human.
You’re not condoning your behavior. You’re not excusing your betrayal. You know what you did was wrong — and you would never want to hurt your beloved ever again. You know that — you own that, too. But you are at the point where you are no longer going to let yourself get berated for the same thing over and over again — and that’s a good thing.
One doesn’t soothe more pain by inducing more hurt. That’s not a recipie for redemption or forgiveness, but one for a perpetual cycle of hate and hurt.
So please, give yourself the freedom to move forward.
Give yourself the love that you have been withholding from your very own being — and know that the only way to move forward is through forgiveness.