It’s been 15 years since my sin of omission. During the rebound from hell, I wasn’t myself. I should never have been in that unhealthy relationship right after the divorce. I fell into a pit of codependence- deeper that I would have imagined possible for the strong, intelligent woman I once was.
During that year, I neglected my children. Not in the legal sense. Their basic needs were met. They were physically safe. But I should have spent more time with them instead of groping for the false sense of worth that ended up in loss of self. The sin of omission was not against my children, but against someone I never met. I did not speak up about an injustice. Granted, making things right was a long shot. I didn’t witness the injustice, and I didn’t know names. It was something I heard about that happened hundreds of miles away. I would have had to investigate. I would have had to be sneaky in asking questions. I would have jeopardized the relationship that I should not have been in in the first place. If he realized what I was trying to do, he’d be mad at me. And I knew in my gut that he and his friends were not safe. Later, I told him that knowing what had happened bothered me. The relationship ended soon after that.
God forgives people for way worse things than my sin of omission. Everything I have learned tells me that God forgives me. Why is it so hard for me to forgive myself? I’ll tell you why. Because I’m supposed to be better than that. I’m supposed to be stronger than that deer in the headlights who didn’t ask questions.
I am much stronger now. Today, I would ask questions like an undercover detective. But I wasn’t strong 15 years ago. It’s a fact that I have to accept. I was wounded, weak, and afraid – a secret train wreck.
Perhaps I can have compassion for that deer in the headlights. Compassion feels closer than forgiveness. I have compassion for the moths that I trap in my bathroom and release outside. Why not for myself?
I’ll start with compassion. Compassion for all. Including me.
This long process of forgiveness was inched forward by this Rumi poem I found when I was ready at https://maverickmist.com/2017/05/06/be-earth/
How should Spring bring forth a garden on hard stone?
Become earth, that you may grow flowers of many colors.
For you have been heart-breaking rock.
Once, for the sake of experiment, be earth!
In this poem, Linda J. Wolff clarifies why I feel so comfortable being by myself and perhaps what it means to be an introvert. Yet I don’t want to be alone ALL the time. I wish I could feel more free to be myself when I’m with others. I want to be kind, but I don’t want to worry so much what other people think. This seems to have been been my dilemma for most of my life. I think I’m getting better at being myself around other people. No, I know I’m getting better at being myself. But I will always love to be home with just my dogs, especially when I’ve been around a lot of people like this past weekend.
…Being comfortable in your own skin is exhilarating, it shines from within the very core of who you are. A free verse poetry about accepting the person who you are. A digital art piece that’s easy on the eyes.
Not because of anyone else,
and when I am with no one but myself.
There’s magic in just being.
Magic in just knowing,
I can be what I want to be.
It’ not about being something
for someone else or
what you want to see in me.
I am me; it is who I am.
It was never about you.
©Linda J. Wolff 2017
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My old career, my new career, social media,
Church committees, volunteer work,
Arranging words on a page, Youtube, TV,
Laundry, yard work,
And my father’s estate
Have all kept me busy,
Kept me from my feelings.
Especially the ones I’d rather not feel.
I should be happy.
I am happy most of the time.
My life is good.
I’m so thankful. Thankful beyond words!
But those damn feelings,
The ones I’d rather not feel
Squeeze their way out of the closet
And sit in the corner,
Waiting for me to drop my guard.
Like the day I go to yoga class
for the first time in weeks
and after I get home,
A wave of sadness
Grabs me around the chest and tries to pull me down.
I resist at first.
I don’t want to care.
After all, I am an introvert.
I don’t really need people
hangin around all the time.
I sure as hell don’t want to be needy!
I can take care of myself,
Maybe it’s just hormones.
But the distance weighs in.
I miss my daddy.
And my two sisters.
And my dog, Jesse.
They are all D E A D.
I miss my daughter, who is alive
For which I am thankful.
I miss my son and his children,
Yes, I have many blessings.
I’m thankful already!
But the distance….
The wave wells up again, and I let it pull me down into my bed,
Let the sadness flood into me.
My daddy is gone.
God holds me while I cry
And tells me it’s okay to feel this sadness.
I’m supposed to feel this sadness.
I’m allowed to feel whatever comes.
I’m allowed to cry sometimes
Even when my life is happy.