I’ve made many mistakes in my life. Looking back, my past is tainted, filled with darkness and regret. I’m not proud of the things I’ve done, the people I’ve hurt.
I’m sorry to everyone who has been affected by my poor choices, my often-lacking judgment. I’m sorry for wronging you.
Ironically enough, though, I’ve also been hurt in ways that I don’t even want to begin to describe. I couldn’t tell you which is worse — hurting someone you love or being hurt by the one person you believed would never hurt you.
I’ve been on both ends of the spectrum. And to be honest, neither of them are good places to be found.
But the truth of the matter is that at one point or another, we all end up on either side. Chances are, we’ll be on both at some point.
We humans are, by nature, flawed. We make mistakes. We hurt people we love. We exercise poor judgment.
I’m not trying to make excuses for our behavior. Hurting someone we love is never okay, nor is it acceptable. But it happens. I understand that. I know what I did in the past, and I know I will never do those things again.
That’s growth. I learned from my mistakes and changed. That’s all you can do in this life — become better each and every day.
Forgiving yourself for hurting a person you love is incredibly hard. Trust me, I know. I’ve been there.
I know I’ve hurt you in ways that you didn’t deserve. But what you did to me was so incredibly vindictive and selfish. Was it payback? Payback for everything I did to you?
The hardest thing is forgiving a person who isn’t even sorry for wronging you. Who doesn’t even realize the damage they’ve done. They’re not sorry. They’re not trying to fix their mistake; they’re not trying to reconcile. They simply do not care.
Yet we still have to forgive them. We have to if we want to truly let them go. If we’re going to move on.
Forgiveness means giving up hope for a different past. It’s accepting that the past is just that — the past. It’s over. What’s done is done.
Forgiveness is coming to terms with the fact that the dust has settled and the destruction left in its wake can never be reconstructed to resemble what it was. There is no going back, no makeovers.
Forgiveness is accepting that yes, maybe you caused the hurricane, or perhaps you didn’t, but the destruction has taken place, and even though it may be unfair, you still have to live in its devastation.
Forgiveness means accepting responsibility, not for causing the destruction, but for cleaning it up. It’s the decision that restoring your own peace is finally a bigger priority than disrupting someone else’s.
Forgiveness doesn’t mean you’re going to be best friends with the person who hurt you; it doesn’t mean you have to endorse what they’ve done to you. It’s not forgetting what has happened.
It just means accepting that they’ve left a mark on you. A mark that is now your burden to bear.
It means you’re done waiting for the person who broke you to come put you back together.
Total forgiveness is realizing that you need to put yourself back together. It’s accepting that they’ve wounded you so profoundly that the scars may remain for a lifetime. But scars are beautiful, I tell you.
Scars are proof that at one point, you overcame something that was made to destroy you. Be proud of those scars.
So this is me forgiving you. Because it’s time to move on. It’s time to let go. This is me forgiving you for lying to me for six months. For leading me on.
For leaving and coming as you pleased. For making me believe you were genuine when you said you wanted this to work.
This is me forgiving you for all the mixed signals, the confusion, the back and forth, the second-guessing, the constant questioning.
This is me forgiving you for lying when you said you still loved me, for saying you loved me period. Because let’s be honest, you never did.
This is me forgiving you for robbing me of six months of my life, for robbing me of my peace. This is me forgiving you for replacing me so effortlessly. For dropping me like a defective toy after you were done breaking me.
If I have to forgive you for all these things, then, of course, it’s only fair if I give some forgiveness to myself as well.
So this is me forgiving myself for all the bad things I’ve done to you. For hurting you, breaking your trust, for lying to you. This is me forgiving myself for making you feel insecure.
For the disrespect, all the sleepless nights. This is me forgiving myself for the jealousy and all the fights I started because I was insecure.
This is me forgiving myself for thinking what we had was special, because it wasn’t. At least not for you. If it were, you would have needed more than a week to move on.
This is me forgiving myself for thinking I was anything more than a placeholder.
This is me forgiving myself for not leaving this relationship a lot sooner. This is me forgiving myself for letting you break me for six continuous months.
I let you come back and leave my life as you pleased. It was my fault. I should have known that you couldn’t let the past go.
I told you to let me or my mistakes go, but you simply couldn’t do that. You were determined to make my life a living hell.
It’s my fault. I let you do this to me when everyone around me told me to walk away. But I loved you; I didn’t have the strength to walk away. So I forgive myself for that too. I forgive myself for being too weak to put an end to our chapter.
I don’t hate you for what you’ve done to me, but I can’t respect you either. I can never look at you the same way. I dated a stranger for two years.
Because clearly, I didn’t know you. I forgive you even though you’re not even sorry for hurting me, for robbing me of my peace.
You don’t care. But that’s just who you are, and I see that now. You never were able to admit when you were wrong. This is no exception. It’s who you are. It’s okay though. I forgive you for myself, for my own peace, my own healing.
This is total forgiveness for both of us. For choosing each other when we should have chosen ourselves.
Total forgiveness is required if we want to let go of what’s holding us back — who’s holding us back.