Growth: Return of the Past and Embracing Forgiveness

Well, it’s been a while since my last blog. LOL, it surprises me to say this, but I ran out of topics to talk about. And what I wanted to blog about, I didn’t quite have the words synchronized in order for it to flow. But today, right now, I want to share a couple of things dealing with my past and the ability to truly learn and know what forgiveness means and does.

This topic came up because I was pondering about the past. Sometime or another, I’ve always heard or being told to, “Leave the past in the past,” and things of that nature. But what if the past doesn’t always stay where “its” supposed to be? Or where we would like it to stay? Many people pretend that certain events and situations did not happen, others admit it happened and disregard the consequences; and then, you have the rare few who actually looks at “self” in the mirror taking responsibilities for their actions, making amends, and enforcing change beginning from the inside and out.

So concerning the past, when I was 18, in college, and away from home for the first time, several people could tell I lived a sheltered life. I was never in the world or you know participating in it. LOL, I was the”good girl”. Always been ridiculed and ostracized because I was too scared or afraid to disobey. But, there was a guy I was talking to; I met him online. We just talked on the phone all the time. However, the guy was angry, aggressive, controlling, and always threatening me. So after I finally summoned the courage to stop talking to him, he threatened to kill me, my family, and throw me in a river where no one would be able to find me. That scared the living daylight out of me. You read about this stuff happening, or on one of my favorite stations such as Lifetime, you see movies about that. But for someone to actually tell this to me, I was paralyzed by fear. However, he never found me. And I thank God for that.

11 years later, this guy found me on one of my professional profiles. He asked me all sort of questions. He was telling me he had been trying to track me down for 11 YEARS!!!! Again, I felt myself frozen in fear. Thoughts were just all in my head like: “Why would he want to find me?” ” What does he want?” “Has he really been trying to track me down for 11 years?!!” I quickly regressed into that young, 18 year old person again… I was engulfed in a cold atmosphere with terror trickling down my spine. I reminded him about what he did and said; how for a few years, I did’t date or talk to anyone.

He psychologically messed me up, and I didn’t realize until now. After I stopped talking to him, I never thought of him anymore. I just prayed that he would never find me or cause any harm to my family.

Well, he got mad saying he wanted to get to know me again and all that. But I was like I couldn’t do it because he scares the HECK out of me. He told me to stop living in the past, that was 11 years ago, etc. Then, he was judging me and accusing me of holding a grudge. So I told him that if I truly held a grudge, I wouldn’t have responded to his message. Evidently,  I was giving him a chance to hear him out and what he truly wanted. I was a little baffled; he did not show any remorse about his actions or anything. In a way, I did not expect an apology (at least not a sincere one) from him. I could tell he lacked compassion. I told him that I forgave him and that I was in a different stage in my life.

In the interim, I was thinking to myself as I do all the time. Even as an adult, you can quickly regress to that moment. For instance, if you were scared of something or you experienced something traumatic, there’s a trigger. It could be something small; something you really don’t even notice nor think about. And that’s how this one was for me. Out of all the people to come back from the past, I NEVER SAW THIS ONE COMING!!!! But I reflected about who and how I was then and who I am now, some characteristics are still the same; but, my mentality isn’t. I have matured, LOL, somewhat. I use to run from those that hurt me. I never voiced it, I just wrote it down; POETRY released it. Now, I’m at the point where I can’t just hold all that stuff in anymore. I have to let it out. Although, I’m still struggling physically, verbally to communicate this, it doesn’t take me as long to voice it.

Now for the last one, a girl from college contacted me about wanting to make amends. We were once friends. She betrayed me; and, I actually heard her tell someone else nasty and untrue things about me. That really cut me. But, I forgave her and moved on. She tried to reconnect with me a few years back, but I told her I could speak to her; I just couldn’t trust her enough to actually engage in a genuine conversation with her. I will never forget the look on her face when I told her that….She seemed shocked and caught off guard.

I was still hurt by what she had done, and the only way I could protect myself and heal was to shield myself. I’m a very sensitive person; I’m an empath. So you can imagine feeling what other’s feel which multiplies my own emotions. It’s difficult and draining. LOL, it’s like feeling what others refuse to express or choose to feel.  It forces itself on me at times.

Today, she reached out to me again. And I chose to give her another chance. She apologized and realized what she did was wrong. And you want to know the funny thing about it? I didn’t hesitate or had to think about it. I just chose to forgive her; she wanted to renew the friendship. Normally, I don’t get that a lot. People wanting to apologize, make amends. Most don’t apologize or even realized the damage and chaos of their actions. But we as human beings have to realize: you can say sorry all day and may get another chance. If you don’t take the time to just self-evaluate, how can you be truly sorry? Do you really want to make it right or you just want another chance because that’s what YOU want?

I’ve been sick with migraines for the past couple of days, but I had an epiphany. The past is not always got to stay in the past, forgotten, or buried. The past experiences are growing pains. They place us in situations to learn, shape, redefine ourselves. On the other hand, we sometimes place ourselves in predicaments. Can you really say you’ve changed or expect to be different if you don’t go through it? Even if one has slept with multiple people, how can you want a change in your life or want something different if you’re running from your past? LOL, the past doesn’t work that way. You have to face it -tested, tried, and true (if you’ve really embraced it). Then, forgiveness is a gift. Not just for others, but for the individual as well. There’s a gospel song that I listen to: “You gone have to hurt before you heal.” It’s true. You can’t ignore the pain, the past, or any of it to escape it. You HAVE to go through……it’s a process.

First, the past confronts you. Then, forgiveness tests you…..now the outcome…well, that’s on you. Yes, I’m trying to be better as an individual inside and out. Now, I can say that I’m not that 18 year old girl or the really hurt individual. I was that in that moment in time, but I have grown from those experiences. They taught me something….

The first one taught me that traumatic experiences can lasts well into adulthood, but I had to realize that was then, and this is now. I’m a woman – sooner or later, I’m going to have to embrace ALL Of ME.

The second taught me the healing of forgiveness. Someone once told me, “Forgiveness is for you.” Yes, there are people who hold grudges. There are people who may never be sorry for what they’ve done or said, but you, the individual have to learn how to forgive for your soul’s sake, for YOU.

Now, I can say….I’ve been renewed and I thank God for allowing me to be tested and see the progress that I couldn’t see at first. I can SEE it now….

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One thought on “Growth: Return of the Past and Embracing Forgiveness

  1. I really like the way you have thought about forgiveness but also about maintaining boundaries and not letting harmful people back into your life. You are so right about having to experience the pain in order to get over it and how triggers can bring experiences right back to us.

    Like

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