• Quote of the Day
    "Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life;
    not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens."
    Kahlil Gibran, posted by David Baxter

Auburn

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I have the strangest thing happen tonight. Yesterday would have been my father's 69th birthday. He has been gone now a year and a half. And it made me sad. Despite all that had happened in my life with him, I do miss him. My father was a raging alcoholic, and a violent one. He had a thing for guns and hurting the people that loved him the most. But, that being said, I knew that somewhere in there, he loved me. It wasn't a healthy love by any means, but it was the best he could do. I turned 41 this past May, and it wasn't until just now, that I have been able to let go of all the anger, hatred and hurt that I have carried with me. I am so shocked. I have a laminated bookmark from the funeral home and why it was out, I don't know. One of the kids using it I guess. But, as I picked it up, I wished him a happy birthday. And for some reason, I kept chatting to this damn bookmark. I feel so light and liberated and at the same time, tired. It is amazing the amount of energy you use to keep so guarded. I have pushed all the worst memories away, and kept them under lock and key. Whether that is healthy or not, it has been my only way to stay sane. But while sitting and talking to this bookmark, it dawned on me that I don't have to do that anymore. I don't plan on revisiting the memories, but I don't need to be afraid of them anymore either.
I thought back to the last day I saw him, the day before he died. I went to the hospital before I went to clean out his apartment. He wasn't altogether lucid, but he had moments. And just before I left, he took my hand and looked me straight in the eyes and told me that he really did love me so much. This broken down, tired looking, old man. And I knew he meant it. But, it didn't seem to mean nearly as much as it should have, until tonight. I just can't believe how good I feel. I loved him so desperately for so long. Sadly, the little girl love for him, never grew with the rest of me. Even leaving him when I was nine didn't seem to diminish the need I had for him to love me back. I almost hated myself for that ridiculous need.
But tonight, as I write this, I know he loved me. He just had no clue how to show his love back. He wanted to love, but loved his booze more. And for the first time in my life, I can live with that. I had to take care of him after his wife died, and I think it is the best time I ever had with him. Granted, he was still drinking, but it no longer affected me with way it used to. But, we had talks and laughed together. We even had some tough talks. There is alot he didn't remember, and I wouldn't bring up. I don't have it in me to inflict pain needlessly. He was already a broken down man, I couldn't kick him too. But, in those last months, I think I saw maybe the best of him.
I feel amazing, but so tired. I just had to share with all of you, as I do now so many things.
I guess, in essence, my gift to him is just as much for me. I have let it go. I won't ever forget, but I can forgive him. Carrying that burden is done.
 

ladylore

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

Congratulations! :)

It sounds that you have done some amazing work. Some years ago I remember reading about a definition of "forgiveness". The said that it wasn't that she was going to forgive and forget like and pretend it didn't happen or she wasn't hurt. For her it was letting this individual off the hook so to speak, she didn't want anything from this person and they didn't owe her anything. What happened wasn't ok but to truely get on with life she let it go. Her definition anyways, and I liked it.

Thank you for sharing that, its a place I strive for.

Ladylore
 
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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

That is wonderful. Thanks for sharing that!
 

Auburn

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

Thank you both so much, I haven't felt this good in a very long time, and I am truly at peace. Gawd, it is a wonderful thing. Thanks ladies! :)
 

HA

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

What a wondewrful place to be, Auburn. Thanks for sharing this with us!

:grouphug:
 

Halo

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

Auburn,

I am so happy to hear that you are feeling at peace....embrace and enjoy it :)

Take care :heart:
:hug:
 

Peanut

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

I just want to echo what the others have said. That's a really nice sentiment and a beautiful post. I think you couldn't have said it better when you said:
I guess, in essence, my gift to him is just as much for me. I have let it go. I won't ever forget, but I can forgive him. Carrying that burden is done
Sounds like a lot of personal growth, good for you. :)
 

Auburn

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Re: To forgive, but never forget.

Thank you Arose. Funny how this forum has become such a daily necessity for me. And no matter what I am going through, it is with all of you that I want to share. I do feel so good. It was a very long road, but I think I have made it. I know there will always be little things that creep up, but that is something everyone has. That I can handle. It feels good to think about my Dad now. And to remember how much I loved his eyes and the way he said "hi babe" Now I can remember him and smile. Major things for me.
Thank you all for your words. Much love to each and everyone of you!
 

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