By the time I was ten, I had really learned quite a bit: (1) Being lost is only temporary; (2) there are mean people everywhere (but fewer in the library); (3) knowledge is power, but make sure you know what you need to know (e.g., I may have had vast knowledge of Charles Dickens’s books, but socially this was no substitute for my failure to grasp the nuances of The Barbie Game); and (4) the gap between what people say and what they feel is like the rain forest: fascinating and uncomfortable.The article is written about her perspective on forgiveness and how things/memories change over time. Bully's forget how cruel they were and people placate others for the sake of "polite social interaction." I fall into the latter of the two categories. I am notorious for saying things are just "peachy" when things are anything but. Just a few weeks ago I initiated a conversation with a person I hadn't spoken to in years because I wanted to be 'polite' and say hello. Pass on a complement or two and convey a sense of "no hard feelings." In the end, I was discarded by the wayside and have spent many days agonizing over why this happened.
What stood out for me was the fact that I am kind of like that bully in her story. I am focused on making peace with myself for any wrong I think I did that I don't see/I don't understand when someone else responds coldly. In the instance of being discarded - I had done nothing wrong to begin with, I was not her bully or foe from the past, but still I was trying to make amends.
Forgiveness is a two way street. You can seek forgiveness from others for what you've done (or think you've done) but if you do not forgive yourself then the guilt will remain. I am an advocate of telling it like it is and being as 'real' as it gets except with myself. I'd much rather live in a world where everyone things I'm OK than have them all know I've been hurt. Which usually leads to silent agony on my part while I plot your demise. (ok, not really the demise part)
Truth is time flies by in the blink of an eye and before we know it we are looking back on when instead of looking forward to what will be. I don't want to get there and then be filled with guilt - perhaps I should take the forgiveness lesson to heart.
What life lesson have you learned?