Does Forgiveness Include Responsibility?


I’ll never forget the moment, I was locked in frustration trying to move on to completing the next chapter of my book. I had been dreading this moment for months, because I knew what it entailed. Putting this book together has definitely been a journey in itself. I’ve had to reflect, remember, re-visit times I didn’t want to recall. Remember hurtful words that were spoken over me….I just dreaded this moment. Then, sitting in the middle of my junky office, I scrolled through my phone to retrieve the message that had been buried for a couple of years now. Even though I hadn’t looked at it from the time it was first sent to me, I knew it was a message I had to keep. So here I was retrieving it again and reading it from a different place in life. As I read the message from this person who was no longer in my life, the tears began to flow uncontrollably. The more my breathing increased, the more the tears flowed until it turned into loud ugly sobs. I don’t know how long I cried for, but I knew when I was done a transition had taken place. I was not the same person I was moments before and there was an immediate change. After I confided in my sister about the moment and got myself together, the words kept coming and would not stop. Word after word, sentence after sentence, page after page of story-telling that flowed like nothing I had experienced before. From that day, I’ve been able to produce without hitting any blocks or walls.
So why am I sharing this intimate moment with you? It’s because I came to realization about a few things as the transition took place. One, I learned I was no longer angry or hurt by this person. They didn’t have the same effect on me as they did one point in time. I no longer wished bad for them because of what they did to me.

My heart went out to this person.

It was a growth spurt for me because in that instant I decided to release something I was holding on to for a good while. Once I made that decision, there was new room for something else – responsibility. I had to grow up from being hurt and miserable to being forgiving and ready to help those in need. I had to let the victim mentality go! By all means, do no misinterpret what I’m saying here. Being a victim does not mean you’re immature. Once you’ve been hurt tattered and scorned, you are absolutely a victim – but you do not STAY a victim. It’s difficult for a lot of people to make this transition, but it’s one that is necessary for healing and growth. For a period of time, the wounds will be painful. The memories will bring tears and the recalls can stir up anger. I went through this over and over again, desperately trying to find the answers to unanswered questions, even beating myself up in the process. Well, that day, sitting in the middle of my office, proved to show that my time was up. It was time for me to let go and grow in healing and responsibility. How am I going to help others heal if I don’t take responsibility of believing in letting go? This person that had caused me so much pain and anguish was also coming from a place of pain, and I had to realize that. They even acknowledged what they did to me and apologized for their actions. In many ways, I was in a better place than they were and could not afford to be hateful or angry towards them.
Your time may be right now or could be further down the road, either way, the time will come for you to let certain things ago in order to make room for better, sweeter things in your life. Are you ready? Because you will be responsible for taking care of these sweeter things and people will depend on you to show them that everything will be okay, they just have to keep pushing, just like you did.