My friend Jackie posted this to my wall yesterday:
“Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology you never got.” ~ Robert Brault
Did somebody ever give you just the right perspective at just the right moment? The planets aligned and the sun rays came flooding in and you shake your sleepy head and wake up. You realize something you already knew and had the power to do was with you all along.
All Sunday evening and on and off through Monday while a frankenstorm named Hurricane Sandy churned off of the coast, I started blogs and deleted them. Blogs that I wanted to use to get some things off of my chest. Blogs that started out nice but ended up as rants and blaming. Blogs I kept writing and erasing.
Have you ever had a cycle like that? It’s good sometimes to go ahead and journal such things just to get them out, but not publicly. It’s good sometimes to even write a letter to the person you feel upset with or misunderstood by – and fold it up and never send it.
I was already aware of this advice, only stated a different way through visualization. Where you imagine a person apologizing to you and you accepting it. Or if you feel you owe somebody an apology – even if they aren’t alive, or choose not to speak to you – the idea is that you imagine the whole thing, apologize, imagine them accepting it and that the energy is somehow projected into the universe.
I think sometimes we hang onto pain we feel when we believe we are “wronged” – because we don’t really want to forgive. We want to be mad at them. Then suddenly everything you once shared in common or that you liked about them, becomes something now ruined or something you dislike.
(Hate isn’t really what I felt, but this card sort of touched on what I mean.)
I think when the other person is blaming us, it’s harder to forgive them because we feel wronged. I think that’s the place I have been stuck in. Where I resented being blamed for something I don’t believe in my heart that I did and also, not fully understanding my “offenses.” I resented being – as I saw it – willfully misunderstood, accused and vilified so I chose to hang onto that resentment and anger. The negative feelings the whole situation created – that person hates you, so now you feel like you have to hate them too. Even though hate is a strong word, and not the right word for what I felt.
This little post on my wall of this simple quote about accepting an apology along with the perfect timing of it snapped me back into reality. It was a rope into a hole of resentment that I dug for myself. It has been deep and shallow at various times. Sometimes shoveling dirt back in, not wanting to dig a hole. Sometimes having one of those days where I dig and dig. Deep enough to need a rope, but not deep enough to bury me.
In part, I guess I’d held out hope that I would get an apology of some kind. Knowing that the person even could acknowledge that I deserved one would have been very healing for me. Sometimes those apologies never come. In fact, sometimes even if they do come, you don’t heal because you spin in your resentment for what happened. In either case, the matter of healing is in your own hands, whether you get the apology or not.
If an apology is what would have healed you, then imagine you got one. And accept it. Even if you can’t right away. It’s a tool you can use, when you’re ready. To help you let go. To help you move on.
I watched The Secret Life of Bees yesterday. It was a great movie. I also truly appreciated the artistry of the set, props and period costumes.
That movie was also a motivating factor in this blog entry. I want to keep a mind about bee yard etiquette.
“I hadn’t been out to the hives before, so to start off she gave me a lesson in what she called ‘bee yard etiquette’. She reminded me that the world was really one bee yard, and the same rules work fine in both places. Don’t be afraid, as no life-loving bee wants to sting you. Still, don’t be an idiot; wear long sleeves and pants. Don’t swat. Don’t even think about swatting. If you feel angry, whistle. Anger agitates while whistling melts a bee’s temper. Act like you know what you’re doing, even if you don’t. Above all, send the bees love. Every little thing wants to be loved.” – Sue Monk Kidd