I believe that the old adage, “Time heals all wounds” is wrong. I honestly believe that forgiveness is the only thing that can heal emotional wounds. Sometimes, it is in your own best interests to forgive people who have wronged you, even if they don’t ask for, need, or want that forgiveness. Not for them, but for yourself.
Carrying a grudge for someone who has wronged you will rarely hurt them, but it will continue to hurt you until you let it go. The weight of that grudge will weigh you down, and keep you from being able to enjoy your life or have healthy relationships.
While going through my divorce, I felt angry with a big red capital flaming “A”. Livid. Furiously indignant. Fuming, outraged, resentful and completely pissed off. ALL the time. That anger took over my whole life. It eroded my other relationships, my sleep, my ability to be the best mom I could and my general outlook.
It took almost eighteen months after we separated (about six months after my divorce was final) before I finally recognized that I was in a much better place, which allowed a little happiness and hope in. Along with that happiness and hope came the first blush of forgiveness. I came to realize that I needed to appreciate that my ex gave me a wonderful son. He is a good dad to Riley, he pays his child support on time, he shows up when he says he’s going to show up and he’s flexible when scheduling SNAFUs arise. I was also able to remember that we were once friends.
Slowly but surely, the rage faded away. However, it wasn’t until I recognized that I actively forgave him his part in our divorce… and also recognized that it wasn’t entirely his fault (That last part was harder) that I felt the weight of it lift from my shoulders. Once I realized that I’d forgiven him, I was able to take a look at other grudges I’d held onto and consciously let go of my hurt, and to recognize my own responsibility in the situation(s).