I’ve decided to forego the introduction to Thirty Days of Forgiveness and cut to the chase for the rest of the practice. If you just got here you can check out the explanation on my Oct. 27th post.
What must die?
11/21: The idea that there are a finite number of times we get to start over. Nope. If that was the case we would stop learning and growing once we reach our pre-determined limit of second chances. Why would we be given more life to live after our epic screw-ups unless we were supposed to live it?
11/22: The seduction of believing that I should do everything I can do. Ugh. There are lots of things I can do that I shouldn’t do. There are really good reasons not to do things I know I can do but I’ll ignore them all trying to prove to the world that I’m capable and qualified anyway. All that really does is prove to the world that I will compromise my good judgment in favor of approval.
11/23: The assumption that I must continue to give everyone (or anyone) a valid, rational, relatable reason for choosing to remain childless. Enough already. It’s been decades. I don’t have to do this anymore. I just don’t.
If to forgive is to love, am I ready to love?
11/21: We pay the bill. We feel the remorse. We learn the lesson. Then we’ve got to move on if we are ever going make anything good out of the experience. Maybe there are some things we can’t ever make right but if the lesson prompts us to make ourselves better, our futures better, or the world at large a better place, then we’ve at least used the lesson to facilitate a greater good. That’s not possible if we just give up and marinate endlessly in shame.
11/22: I have to learn that it’s okay to sometimes say “I’ll pass.” It’s not a sign of weakness, fear, inability, or failure. I don’t have to accept every single challenge presented to me, especially if there isn’t a better reason than simply trying not to appear weak, afraid, or a loser.
11/23: It’s okay for people to think whatever they think about my choice. It’s okay for people not to understand. I don’t have to set anyone straight. I’ve explained it a bajillion times and it changes nothing. I can accept that I don’t have to answer any more questions about it. It’s done. If I really am fine with it I need to be reconciled to the social consequences of mystery and mis-perception without rushing to go on record every time someone wants to know.
What pain must I face?
11/21: It was completely unnecessary for me ever to assume “I’ll just have to pay for this for rest of my life.”
11/22: Fear of looking like I can’t do something really isn’t that different from the fear of not being able to do it. D’uh.
11/23: Vehemently preaching “I’m at peace with my decision,” implies I’m not at peace with it. If I truly felt peace I wouldn’t feel compelled to preach or justify or convince anyone. I’d just be at peace.
Can I own this publicly?