Rethinking Forgiveness

Featured image is a piece called “Hug Yourself” by reddit user u/mommaliciousm.

Forgiveness is hard. Extremely hard. I’ve had this post drafted since 2019 because it’s such a difficult topic to discuss.

Ever since I was a child, I’ve had a bad habit of holding grudges. I usually wasn’t the type to outwardly show it or take it out on people, but if I was hurt, I could hold onto that pain for weeks, months, or even years. I could sit for ages, just seething. I’d ruminate on what I or the other person could’ve done differently to change the situation, how I’d give that person a piece of my mind, or just hoping and praying that person X gets their karma for what they did to me.

Who is that helping? Certainly not me. Spending so much time to repeat these painful situations in my head was just like taking a knife to an open wound and cutting into it again and again, not allowing myself to heal. But, how could I not do so? How could anyone, especially my antagonists, recognize my pain if I didn’t keep my wounds open? If I didn’t hold a grudge?

There’s no use in this behavior. We all make mistakes. Sometimes we unintentionally hurt people that we love. However, the people who genuinely care about you and recognize your pain would still be there by your side. They would’ve apologized, did their best to change their behavior, and made amends. They wouldn’t have blamed you, run away to avoid responsibility, or even worse, dug their heels in further. Unfortunately, some people care more about saving face than admitting that sometimes good people do bad things, and some just simply don’t care how their words and actions affect others.

Still, we should learn to seek forgiveness anyway. However, not for the sake of those who hurt you. For yours. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but the people you hold grudges against likely don’t care or think about the pain they put you through. The only person affected by this fruitless revenge, is you. Yes, your antagonists caused the initial blow, but it’s you who keeps cutting back into your wounds. Let yourself heal.

Forgiveness doesn’t have to mean forgetting who or what happened to you. It doesn’t have to mean that your hurt didn’t happen. It doesn’t have to mean accepting antagonists back into your life. It doesn’t have to mean that what happened to you was okay.

Forgiveness has many faces. You have the power to choose how you want it to look. You can even change its face depending on the time and the situation. Sometimes, forgiveness is choosing to let go of the hate, the anger, and the sorrow. Sometimes, forgiveness is choosing to be happy. Sometimes, forgiveness is letting yourself live a full life instead of locking yourself in a prison of grief.

Letting go of your pain is one of the hardest things you can do. It will take a lot of time and effort. You will have relapses. You may not even see when you finally have let go. But one day, in the midst of living your beautiful life, you’ll notice how light you feel. You’ll realize that you’ve freed yourself.

That? That’s the true revenge.


Thank you for reading! Please leave a like and comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts below. Part 2 of this post will be posted next Friday, so be sure to subscribe to the blog! You don’t want to miss it.

Have a good one,


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