01 Mar This thing called forgiveness …
I have heard it said that true forgiveness is when you can say “thank you for the experience”. True forgiveness, two words that often do not go together. We want to forgive, yet… sometimes we forgive a little, sometimes we forgive but never forget, but true forgiveness … what does that mean?
What I can tell you is that true forgiveness, when it is really true … gives you incredible freedom. And after I experienced that for the first time it gave me all the more reason to do it again and again, no matter how painful it starts out as.
I forgive you
I forgive me
I forgive it all
Just to feel free
I went through an experience a few years back where I was in a situation that had me doing a certain job, a job I was really quite happy to be doing, but as the days and weeks and months went by I realised that I wasn’t being rewarded for what I was doing. I almost felt like I was being held back from getting the recognition I deserved from all the work that I was putting in. I was working harder and harder, and later, and making sure I was online more than offline in an attempt to try to prove that I was deserving of the reward. And the more I tried harder and added time to my day that I took out of time I should’ve been using to live, the more restricted and constrained I felt. It was suffocating. But still, I tried harder and harder, and I started to ask for the reward and recognition, which I soon came to realise sounded like I was begging and begging for myself. It made me bitter, and sad, and angry.
As the days and weeks and months went by again, I realised that I had become totally resentful towards the place I worked. It was all-consuming. I had slipped down into a place where I thought I was worth nothing, and even begging for a little light wasn’t even given, not in the slightest … no one said a word to me. No one was saying I was terrible at my job, but no one was saying a thing … which I thought was worse. Just tell me that I not delivering, that way I could almost understand why I wasn’t being recognised, why you didn’t think I deserved to be rewarded. Help me to understand is all I found myself saying to myself in the mirror every single morning as I got dressed to go to work. I was in a horrible, dark, bitter, and self-degrading place. In amongst this time someone outside of my job had seen me and recognised me for who I was to them a long time back and asked me to help them on their journey, and so I had begun my coaching business.
I was thinking back on it the other day, and I realised that I had to forgive the people who wouldn’t “see” me and in fact, I should actually thank them, and be so so very grateful for what they did (or in this case did not do), because if they had done what I wanted, I would never ever in a million years be where I am today.
But I must tell you I only forgave the other day, and wow it felt like I had personally cut a noose from around my neck. One that had come close to strangling me and was now loose, but still there, because I still looked at them with a sense of distaste because I didn’t like how they had made me feel. But today, after forgiving, and really totally and honestly letting go of it, can I look and smile, and say a great big thank you to them. Thank you for pushing me into a place that I should be.
Forgiveness is painful, it is hurtful, it is crippling, it can consume you, it can suffocate you, it can be so debilitating that you want to scream for space and freedom. But you know where space and freedom are, it is in the forgiveness.
We seem to (as humans) stay in the place or situation and all it makes you feel, but this is a place of darkness, and when you in the dark you will never see the light, not unless you open the door, light a candle, turn on a light … And the only way for some light to come in is to forgive, to truly forgive.
Now I am not saying this is easy … it is not, but what I can promise you is that it is not nearly as dark or as painful as where you are right now. If you can try to step out of the situation, almost look at the situation as an outsider … so look in and see yourself there, but don’t be there. Look in and see if you can see why the person is doing what they are doing to that other person in the situation. And then look in and see if you can see where the light could come from for you … where is the light switch, the door, the lighter for the candle … look and look until you can see it, and then go back into the situation and head that way.
Do not see yourself as weak for forgiving, because if you truly can see the light and the positive for you in that situation you will be able to see how strong you actually are for going there.
To forgive is not easy, but it makes you feel free
So if you really want to be free, feel free, and let go of this dam thing that is holding you back, something that someone else has done to you … you have to forgive, try to forgive.
Here’s to doing the hardest thing ever ~ forgiving truly