Hurts and Good (but not good hurts)
Sometimes I receive chain letters from friends and family, as I’m sure many people do.
As a kid, these were so much fun because they came by postal mail from all sorts of random locales (i.e., when I was a kid, even Boston was a far away land and we lived only an hour away), plus I got to reply using colored ink pens and markers and had the “responsibility” for copying the letter exactly and sending it out to a number of recipients. Some nights I’d wonder if I effectively furthered the chain, or if the letters I sent barely made it beyond the local postman.
Today, I get chain letters via email constantly. And often times they’re sort of silly – I mean, short statements about somebody’s relative with an illness, photos of dancing cats, or old-school 2D animation of flags flying doesn’t particularly excite me. Sometimes though, I come across a meaningful message.
A couple of days ago I received a chain letter from a relative and though there was a bit of a parable that proceeded this quote, I found this particular idea valuable:
‘WHEN SOMEONE HURTS US WE SHOULD WRITE IT DOWN IN SAND, WHERE WINDS OF FORGIVENESS CAN ERASE IT AWAY.
BUT, WHEN SOMEONE DOES SOMETHING GOOD FOR US,WE MUST ENGRAVE IT IN STONEWHERE NO WIND CAN EVER ERASE IT’
LEARN TO WRITE YOUR HURTS IN THE SAND AND TO CARVE YOUR BENEFITS IN STONE.
Forgiveness is a challenging concept. The act of saying “I’m sorry for hurting you” is sometimes difficult in and of itself, but the act of actually forgiving can be just as difficult (if not moreso). I can recognize when someone unintentionally hurt me, but the issue of course is, how do you move on afterward?
I’ve been really struggling with moving on – especially when I feel that the hurt I endured is unfair (i.e., not per my own fault, and against what I would choose for myself). Since this situation is in the middle of the legal realm right now I can’t describe much detail, but suffice it to say that intellectually I can understand that an accident occurred and that I was unfortunately deeply hurt (both literally and figuratively) – however understanding this on an emotional level is very difficult, as is letting go of the pain and anger.
I’ve heard people say “you forgive but you don’t forget” and the truth is, I wish I could forget, because often times the memories make things all the more painful.
And of course the other, redeeming/lighter, component to the message above relates to that old axiom “accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative.” I have much, MUCH to be thankful for, that I realize. And I am so incredibly fortunate to have wonderfully supportive people in my life (boyfriend, friends, family, health care folks and work colleagues included).
But sand and rocks are not altogether unlike – in fact I feel like rocks can become sand if you allow them to break down. So I guess that’s what I’m trying to do these days…take the hurt done to me that started inscribed on a rock, and begin breaking it down until it can be sand one day – and hopefully blow away in the wind, bringing me some much desired peace and calmness of spirit.
Thanks for reading! – S