30 Days of Truth: ForgivenessPosted: August 11, 2014
If there is anyone that I need to forgive, it would be my parents–both of them.
I would need to forgive them for subjecting me to their violent fights when I was a mere child.
I would need to forgive them for their harsh words, and their inability to just let me be me.
I would need to forgive them for their chronic lateness–I was always the last kid picked up from the birthday party. The neglected child sitting in front of the school after the teachers and janitorial staff had gone home and still there was no one there to collect me. One my first visit home from college–when they hadn’t seen me for months–I waited an hour and a half at the airport for them to arrive to get me. I was never a priority. They simply could not arrange their activities to make sure they were there when they said they would be–and it hurt. To this day, if someone is late, I begin to have a panic attack.
I would need to forgive them for beating me–because these weren’t spankings, thoughtfully doled out for childhood crimes. These were the flailing of limbs, the losing of tempers, and they occurred not for anything I did, but for who I was. “Whore!”–whack. “Bisexual!”–slap. “Rebellious!”–thump.
I would need to forgive them for reading my journals–for the fact that in high school, during the years when I most needed to be able to write and get my thoughts out on paper, I could not bring myself to write at all, because I knew from previous experience that my privacy would not be respected.
I would need to forgive them for their lies, false promises, and failure to ever follow through. For their using of The Bible to justify all the horrible things they did to me. For their inability to ever see my side–their insistence that they are good parents and I am a bad daughter.
I would need to forgive my father for the reckless way he drove when a disagreement occurred in the car, and his verbal threats to kill us all. For screaming at me and attempting to break down my door when I asked him for privacy to breastfeed my son the day after he was born. I would need to forgive my mother for staying with him all this time, when, even as a child, I begged her to take my sister and I, and leave.
But I do not. I do not forgive them. I place my weekly phone call and shut down any conversations that veer towards the religious or the personal, and I gratefully hide out on the other side of the country–free.
I do not dwell on my anger towards them, but I cannot say that I am past it all.
I sincerely wish them the best, because I do not want anyone to suffer, not matter how much suffering they may have caused me.
But I do not forget. I do not forgive. I am not over it, and there is a chance I may never be.