Forgiveness

Reposted from a message board comment I made elsewhere today…

Sorrow
Van Gogh, Sorrow

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I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the meaning of “forgiveness.” We talk about this as something we give to the person who has “harmed” us. “I forgive YOU.” But really I think we need to find another word to use because we’ve twisted the word “forgiveness” so badly.

The forgiveness and letting go we need as professional resenters and progressing healers isn’t really about letting the person off the hook and telling them it was OK. In some cases, it absolutely is NOT OK. (As in the case of my molestation throughout my childhood. I did NOT have a role to play in that. You didn’t have a role to play in your trauma either.)

But we need a word besides “forgiveness” that implies wiping the slate of your own heart clean of the pain and sadness and anger that memory still causes you.

Forgiveness isn’t really about the other person. Forgiveness is about freeing YOURSELF so you can live without the shackles that incident has placed on your life, on your ability to be proud and self-confident, on your ability to live your life without something you can’t control playing over and over in your mind and making your stomach and heart and brain grieve and ache and rage all the time.

That’s totally why I drank. It feels so much better to feel nothing than to feel all that sadness and pain.

But if you can find a way to let that shit go and also stop drinking, think of how light your brain and stomach and heart would be! That’s what we need.

(So let me know when you figure out how to do it!)

*Now we all join hands and perform our inspirational, synchronized dance routine to “Let It Go!”*

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One response to “Forgiveness”

  1. Thomas Jones says :

    Hi, Deanna. This is not directly related to your topic, but I believe you may enjoy reading it:

    http://www.newyorker.com/news/sporting-scene/the-philosophy-of-ryan-hall?mbid=rss

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