When I was in my twenties, forgiveness to me spelt defeat, weakness, and giving in. I would act as if I was in an actual war and I wouldn’t give in until the other side apologized first. After that happened, I immediately went back to where our relationship or friendship was initially. I would later in life see how that could backfire on me.
Forgiveness for black women is almost unheard of. Depending on who is in your ear the average black woman can go years without speaking to one another. If you have people in your life that want you to fully flourish, they will give you that talk where “you know you were wrong” and that you have to reach out to each other and end the war. At times we will feel remorseful and correct the situation, no matter who went wrong where first, second, or last. Cherish those people. They want the best for you and their outlook on life is both positive, and enlightening. Keep them around.
I, myself, I can forgive rather quickly. I do that due to being afraid of those people leaving my life permanently. I remember when I was in my twenties, I had got into a confrontation with two family members and after those arguments, they passed away and we never got the opportunity to resolve the issues. One fall out was with a cousin, and she meant the world to me. We ALWAYS argued like two old ladies. Lol I mean it was little stupid stuff where the other would be like you know what whatever. We would get over it and laugh about it. This argument was different. To this day, I can’t remember why we argued, but I looked at her and I said, “I don’t ever want to see you again!” and I left out with my mind made up. She went out that night and the car she was in flipped over multiple times and she died. I was so heartbroken. I had lost my big cousin/sister, and she was never coming back. How could I have let that argument allow me to say never speak to her again?
Another time I felt as if I lost someone before I could forgive them was my father. In my mind dads are supposed to be the strongest man in the world. At times, I felt that I became strong from the relationship I had with him. I knew that I had to become this “Big Girl” because he wasn’t being what I needed him to be. We had a hot and cold relationship. We loved each other, but we also both had issues with one another. I wanted him to be that father that I saw on movies and tv shows where the dad was always right there for their little girl. Our relationship had gotten strong by the time I turned 12. I felt like ok this is what I was looking for. That was short lived in 2002 when he sat me down and told me that he was dying due to kidney failure. My dad had finally become superman to me and now I was losing him. I felt defeated all over again. I lost my dad when I was 15. I don’t think I’ve fully recovered from that lost. I just feel like when I get to a place with someone, I feel that they will leave as well, and I’ll be back to square one. So, I have this indestructible and impenetrable wall up. If you can get through, I know you’re the one. If not, then another one bites the dust.
My 30’s already have been more than insightful. That old way of thinking wasn’t getting me anywhere. I had to relearn some things in my life, and stop being my own worst enemy. I didn’t realize that I was in my own way and that I could potentially sabotage something great that God was trying to send my way. Your 20’s are figuring out what went wrong, and your 30’s are for ok let’s fix this so that we can be better. I’m have the mindset of being open and willing for more. I love more, I laugh more, I express my feelings more, I’m more vulnerable, and yes, I even forgive more as a black woman. Word of advice to those that don’t know where to start with forgiveness. Forgive yourself. Forgiving yourself and your heart for certain things that are out of your control is the very first step. What happen to you in your past, isn’t the determining factor of your life. Love more and forgive more.