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I wish I could let go

When I was 15 years old, my best guy friend fell in love with me.

We first met freshman year (when I was 13) during band camp. My best friend Riley and I walked into the percussion room, since she was in the pit crew, and there he was, playing a beautiful song on the piano. All I really remember was that I was hot, sweaty and, disgusting looking (8am-3pm in the Florida sun lol), but when I saw him it was like I was seeing someone I had known my whole life. No I didn’t automatically have a crush on him, but I just honestly felt like I had known him forever. Through my friend Riley and just generally being in band together we finally met and started talking. Then classes began and we had the majority of our classes together… so we soon became best friends. I will call him Todd.

I don’t really remember too many details anymore of freshman year… I’ve tried to block most of my memories of him out… just because of the pain of it all… or maybe I’m just getting old and honestly don’t remember.

I do remember though that freshman year was a blast. Between him and my best friend Riley (who also became really good friends with Todd), I had a great support system at school.

I’m not sure when I realized I had the hugest crush on him. I think it was probably half way through the school year. Just being around him all the time, his humor, his talent for the piano and percussion instruments, his talent for acting (he was the only freshman in the history of the school to ever be awarded a leading role in the school play), his heart for God, and just his personality attracted me to him.

I know for a fact he went through the rest of freshman year completely oblivious for my feelings for him. Which was actually the way that I wanted it. My family being the strict family that it was, I wasn’t allowed to have a boyfriend until I was 16 anyways… so my feelings for him really didn’t matter because I couldn’t act on them at all.

I remember doing everything with him though. We did all of our class projects together… I was always the one laughing hysterically at who knows what… I dearly love to laugh… and he knew every way to make me laugh. One of my favorite memories is of him actually accidentally tripping me (I’m so incredibly clumsy) and I ended up doing a full flip somehow. It was so hilarious. He also didn’t live far from me… probably less than a mile… so he often came over to hang out or if we had an assignment for class my parents every once in a while would let me visit him. We would also talk for hours on AIM everyday.

Sophomore year came, I was turning 15 that October and he was turning 16. I was just as much in love with him as ever, but we were nothing more than best friends.

Sophomore year was probably the third worst year of my life (the worst being 2011-2012 school year b/c of my severe OCD and the second worse was my senior year of undergrad when my OCD was severe but I had no idea it was OCD). This was the year that my brother was kicked out of my family and I had to pretend he was “dead” (yea… I told you my family is messed up), my mother was constantly crying because of it all, my oldest sister also started some drama because of the stuff that was happening with my brother, and of course I was constantly having to deal with the shadow of my other sister who is a genius (I don’t blame her in anyway way… but I do blame my parents for this rivalry). Riley’s mother was also diagnosed with cancer that semester… which was very difficult on her.

But anyways back to Todd… I’m not sure when things started to change… but sometime around my 15th birthday they were definitely changing between us. For my 15th birthday he gave me a present and a card… I don’t remember what the present was (it was probably something silly like a pencil since I was always stealing his b/c I never remembered to bring one to school), but the card seriously was the most amazing card. He had made it himself and it had every single thing that defined me on it… my love for Panda bears, chocolate, stargate, Mulan, and various other things. And the poem of friendship that he wrote and put in it was beautiful.

Soon he began to write me more things. He would write me extremely sweet letters to me. I don’t remember the content of them… but they were always so kind and caring… soon these letters started to become poems.

This is when, I started to get scared. He obviously had feelings for me (or at least I was pretty sure… I was never 100% positive throughout this time… I always thought maybe I just thought he had feelings for me b/c I had such a huge crush on him). I wasn’t allowed to have a boyfriend though and I really didn’t want to loose him as my best friend… so what was I supposed to do? And did I really like him or maybe I didn’t? I really had no idea. I was extremely confused. I do know though that he was coming to visit me at my house everyday, walking me to and from my classes even when we didn’t have the same class, calling me a lot, writing me poems, and always trying to convince me to come to some function with him (but I never could because I wasn’t allowed to go out with ANY of my friends due to parental restrictions).

One night we had a band field trip where we had to play outside where it was really cold. On the way to the location he handed me another poem. We had been reading Cyrano de Bergerac in our English classes (we were in two separate classes with different professors but did the same readings). His professor asked them to write a poem as if they were Cyrano writing to Roxane. Todd handed me this poem on the bus and told me that he just pretended that he was writing to me the whole time. It was an extremely romantic poem… I told him it was beautiful and tried to give it back to him but he told me it was for me. I kept it and realized where things were headed… so I intentionally tried to avoid it… Riley was near by so I started discussing something “serious” with her and tried to keep myself completely occupied the whole time so that Todd couldn’t talk to me alone again.

On the way back from the place we went though my luck wasn’t that great. It had been a really cold night and we had been playing our instruments. When I got on the bus… he immediately sat right next me and asked me if “If my lips were cold.” I misheard him and just thought he was asking me if I was cold… and I replied “yes my whole body was cold”… and he replied “would you like me to warm your lips for you?”… it was seriously the WORST line ever… I still laugh at it today… but at the time I was panicked… I realized what I had been trying to avoid was happening… I quickly turned away and said no… but then he picked up my hand and started tracing patterns on my palm… I didn’t know what to do… this was fantastic… my best friend who I had been “in love” with for a year actually liked me back… but there was nothing I could do… even if I told him I liked him back my parents would never allow it… and did I really want it? I didn’t want to hurt our friendship… he then told me that he had feelings for me. And that he knew there was going to be something between us ever since we met that day in the percussion room when he saw me and thought he knew me all his life… I had never told him that I had thought the same thing… the fact though that we both felt this… what did that mean?

I was so confused… so frightened… I have been a romantic all my life… but the idea of physical closeness with a guy in terms of a relationship… i had never in my life experienced it and was terrified… I told him right away that I just wanted to be friends… but I could tell from his face that he wasn’t convinced…

The rest of that semester just went in a blur… I am so ashamed that I led him on… I LOVED the attention that he gave me… I loved being with him… but yet I hated it at the same time b/c he was my best friend I didn’t want to loose him and I wasn’t allowed to date… I was barely ever allowed to leave me house! The only time he and I ever got to go anywhere together was just to the church musical with his family and Riley’s family.

I don’t remember much of the details of everything… but I knew I was stringing him along making him think that he had a chance… bc I didn’t know what I wanted… he continued to send me the most beautiful poetry, write the most beautiful letters, and visit me daily… he even invited himself over to my family’s christmas.

He actually wrote me a letter that December that even 8 years later… I still can’t delete:

“when you look at me what do you think of? when I look at you, I see a beautiful young girl whose qualities cannot be measured by words but by the look on someone’s face when they see you. in fact, your beauty cannot be measured by anything. it is such a joy to observe something as beautiful as you that you don’t want to minimize its value by trying to compare it to words. your eyes shine like two stars in the heavens that never cease to glow with their radiant gleam, unless they are filled with tears. oh, such a way it is to ruin such beauty to make one cry. if ever I should cause those two stars to stop shining and instead fill with tears, I would never forgive myself. if I was to choose to look past all that, I would see an endless journey into a world where everything I ever wished for can come true. I look into your eyes and I see someone with such passion for life itself and someone who has the heart to want to make others the same way. you face, my beautiful angel, has such a radiant glow to it that you light up a room with a single smile. but really is appearance everything? I think that the way someone is and the way they make someone else feel is so much more important. here’s the problem again. words. how could I ever express to you how I feel with just words? they are insufficient. to put it plainly however I say this. you are the kind of girl that doesn’t just care about you and your problems, but instead you reach out to others and help them with theirs. you do this for me and continue to do it for me everyday. you complete me sammi. no one else could ever do the things you do and fill the space in my heart that is reserved for you. you give me a reason for living. you are the reason to live. I live for you and only you. I love you. Only you are qualified to complete the rest of this letter by telling me how you feel. will you?”

He was the first boy to ever tell me he loved me… I loved his love for me.

I’m not really sure when things really started to fall apart but they did… he was dealing with unrequited love and I was his best friend… I didn’t know what to do or how to deal with it. We both kept getting frustrated b/c all he wanted was for me to return his love but I couldn’t even though I wanted to. I actually explained to him several times that I wasn’t allowed to date until I was 16 and even had Riley explain it… but it seemed to go in one ear and right out the other…

We started to get in a TON of fights… a serious amount… We kept putting poor Riley in the middle of it all…. so my friendship with her started to fall apart… and I didn’t think enough about her… I only kept thinking of Todd and I and what was happening, but I didn’t think about what Riley was going through with her mother… I was extremely self- centered. She started to turn to another friend… and flash forward to a couple years later.. a lot of drama occurred between them to the point that Riley had seriously considered suicide and had changed her life in a lot of ways… therefore I blame myself for Riley going through this… b/c if I had been a better friend, she would have never turned to her other friend and gotten involved with that drama.

But anyway I digress from the story of Todd…

Todd started to get extremely clingy. He was constantly by my side and I couldn’t ever shake him off. He was now becoming what I had declared in my self-centered world as an annoying presence… He was constantly depressed but there was nothing I could do about it… he was trying to get my attention by having “life crises” and I would try to help him because he was my best friend… but the drama was constant… of course he was also depressed because I didn’t return his feelings which was just making things worse… We went several weeks multiple times without talking…

It actually got to a point at one time that I actually made up that I had a boyfriend, so Todd had to give up. I was so incredibly mean… but I thought he would see through it… I told him thousands of times I wasn’t allowed to date, so obviously this had to be a ruse… but it actually worked well and he started to leave me alone… I’m not proud to say that I am actually a pretty good manipulator… Todd I think was skeptical for a while whether it was true but after I told him my “boyfriend’s name” and all his details and then offered to introduce them… he completely backed off. I purposefully asked Todd if he wanted to meet my ‘boyfriend’ b/c I knew that he would say “no” and yet it would show that I really had to have had a boyfriend b/c I wouldn’t have been able to introduce them otherwise. I really relied on that lie.

Riley though eventually spilled the beans… causing Todd and I to have a huge blow out… we had dealt with most of this fight via AIM which construes things as well which didn’t help.. at the beginning of the conversation he told me “you really hurt me you know” and I meant to reply back “I know :(” but accidentally replied with a ” 🙂 ” instead… it was honestly a complete and utter accident… before I realized the mistake that I made… Todd threatened me with bodily harm… Knowing Todd as I did I should have known he would never hurt me… but I was greatly offended… I was talking to my brother at the time of this via AIM and I told my brother what happened… my brother immediately got his contact information from me and chewed him out.

That is when Todd and I stopped talking. Riley also flipped out (rightfully so… I was such a mean, self centered individual)… and we had a huge blow out…

I had lost both of my best friends.

The pain I was in was indescribable… I had no one to turn too.

Because of me the two lives I cared about most in the world were hurting to such a degree that their pain was indescribable. Todd became suicidal.

I really don’t know how or when… but by the end of the school year Todd and I had made up… we were talking again… things were not anywhere where they were before this all started… but we were kind of friends again… Riley and I were not on speaking terms…

Over the summer we had one more blow up and that is when my parents declared that enough was enough… they banned me from ever talking to him. Even though we went to the same church and school and had all the same friends I was not even allowed to look at him. My father even went as far as to go to Todd’s father and tell him that he didn’t want Todd anywhere near me.

I never told him why I stopped talking to him. I just left him. Hanging. He tried to get some of his friends to talk to me to figure out why I wouldn’t even look at him. But I didn’t.

The pain I caused Todd… I will never be able to forgive myself… that summer he became seriously depressed and really suicidal… Riley kept him alive… but I had torn my best friend a part… due to my selfishness, mean attitude, and just uncaring self… my best friend didn’t want to live anymore…

Junior year he tried to corner me at school and talk to me… but I ran away from him… my family ended up moving a few months into that school year… I never even told him goodbye… we had one class together… and he knew I was moving… he sat in his seat waiting for me to come up and say goodbye to him… but I didn’t… I just left him there…

Eventually Riley and I made up… she forgave me for what I did… so we became friends again… and through her I still heard about Todd… she didn’t tell me about him maliciously… but because I asked… and because she had gone through the drama I mentioned above and he was there for her… I was indebted to Todd because he had been there for Riley when I could not since I had moved…

Todd and I ended up going to the same undergraduate institution. And some how because my life is such a comedic tragedy… we ended up in the exact same 15 person orientation group with an incoming freshman class that was way over 7,000 students… he was so nice… he didn’t say anything to me.. but he kept trying to get me to say something to him by opening the door for me… but I avoided him like the plague…

For his 19th birthday that year… Riley couldn’t think of a present to give him… she ended up convincing me to meet with him… His present was 19 minutes (a minute for each of his years) with me… so that he could get the ‘closure’ he needed… we were civil… we spoke… but I kept time… the moment those 19 minutes were up… I told him good bye and that I wished him the best… and once again I left him sitting… We even spent two years in the same leadership program of which I was actually one of the main leaders of… I still avoided him like the plague…

I didn’t know who to act around him. I knew what I did to him… how could I ever face him again? How could I talk to him and not end up on my knees begging him to forgive me?

Todd blames me for a lot of what has happened in his life still to this day. He blames me for the fact that he gave up acting, writing poetry, and writing dramas. He blames me for his bad high school experience because he was extremely depressed the whole time. He blamed me for everything that was wrong.

I deserve that blame…I ruined my best friend…

The summer after 10th grade was horrible… I knew he was suicidal and there was nothing I could do about it… my parents wouldn’t let me see him… and I didn’t know what to do anyway… he had hurt me a lot too in all of our many fights… even if I was allowed to speak with him I never wanted to be friends with him again…

that summer I went to youth camp for the first time… I was in ruins… I had lost both of my best friends… and Todd was hurting to such a degree that I constantly felt his pain… I spent the whole time basically in prayer…and crying… begging God to somehow forgive me… to somehow make things right… to somehow show me that I was still a good person…

It was from that youth camp session on that I stopped trying to care about myself. Of course I failed a lot… I fail all the time at it now… but I promised myself that I would try my hardest to put others before me constantly.. too never hurt anyone the way that I had hurt Todd. I put everyone else’s happiness before mine because I was terrified of hurting others…I’m still so incredibly terrified of hurting others. I want to protect everyone all the time even when it comes at the cost of hurting me.

It was this that fed completely and utterly into my OCD… I was… I am a terrible person… I hurt both of my best friends… Todd didn’t want to live anymore… I shouldn’t be alive anymore…

I know I need to forgive myself… but I never will be able too…

I recently thought that God had forgiven me… by giving me my first chance after Todd for love.. but it appears that karma is punishing me. Perhaps I’m still worthy of punishment.

My therapist tells me I need to forgive myself. I was young and immature… and I didn’t do anything maliciously. She says I did not ruin his life, but the way that he chooses to deal with what happened is what is defining his life. But it is so hard to believe that.

The time period of my life with Todd has defined my life. I will never stop trying to make up for the hurt that I caused. I will never stop trying to become more selfless… I will never stop trying to be a slave to humanity because I don’t feel as though I deserve to live.

I know my OCD is completely feeding into all of this… I had forgiven myself… well I’ve never completely forgiven myself, but I had started to believe and actually act as though I deserved to be happy… I had allowed myself to move on and just learn from my experience with Todd so I would never do anything like that again… but now I realize even more than ever how my life essentially ruined the life of another…this is why I can’t love again… I just hurt those who I try to love and they hurt me.

I don’t know how to let go of my past and forgive myself… Perhaps this is the punishment I deserve.

 
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Posted by on November 30, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Ruminations….

There are several topics on my mind tonight…topics that I would love responses too.

(1) What exactly is forgiveness? I watched the Courages tonight with my mother. It was a good Christian movie with many good story lines. A difficulty though I was having with the movie was how often the word “forgive” was thrown out there. “I forgive you.” Three such powerful words… that people just seem to throw out there without really knowing what the meaning is… thinking about it… I don’t think I really know what the meaning is either.

According to my dictionary on my computer: to forgive means to stop feeling angry or resentful toward someone for an offense, flaw, or mistake.

So if I say “I forgive my mother for not caring for me in a way a mother should when I was younger.”

Ok… so I’m not angry… It is the past… I’ve let it go… I’m not resentful… this is the way life is now, so I must move on. But does this mean I have to trust my mother? Is trust tied to forgiveness? I love my mother… but does forgiveness mean I have to like her?

If I have truly forgiven someone (like my mother)… what does it all entail? I’m not angry or resentful.. but does that mean that I have to try to forge a meaningful relationship with my mother (which I actually have but sometimes its harder to forge it than others)? Am I not allowed to give up?

If a husband and wife divorce one another… and it was for pretty mutual reasons… and they forgive one another for it not working out…. are they allowed to just step out of each other’s lives? Are they allowed to stop caring? Or does forgiveness entail continuous work and continuously caring for that person you have forgiven? Is perhaps forgiveness a climax of a story? and the resolution and conclusion still have to come after it? Or is forgiveness the end? Or more so… perhaps forgiveness is the beginning of a story… such as when one is “born again” in Christian terms… you are forgiven and your life starts anew from then.

Does that make sense? I’m just confused… I guess I really just don’t understand the concept of forgiveness.

God has forgiven us of our sins because His Son died for us. He continues on a relationship with us. But does he trust us again in terms of not making the same mistake twice? What all does forgiveness entail? Does He care for us in the exact same way He cared for us before the sin?

Forgiveness does not mean forgetfulness.

I’ve not delved at all into the literature of the Bible in terms of this question… so I really don’t know… which brings me to my second point tonight…

(2) I honesty don’t know when the last time I prayed was.

This is bad… it has gotten to the point… that to be honest… I ask someone else to pray for our meals, so that I don’t have too…

I’m not completely sure why…

I guess it has to do with “Why God are you putting me through this (in terms of my OCD)?”

I realize I’m being like a spoiled little kid “You haven’t answered my prayers, so I’m going to give you the silent treatment.” –really though this only hurts me.

I mean… don’t get me wrong… I’m doing TONS better OCD wise… but what if that is just a mask? What if “having OCD” is a mask? What if the moment that I open up the Bible I’m struck down with what a horrible person I am. As I mentioned elsewhere… it really isn’t an obsessional thought… but more of an underlying haunting idea… or perhaps that is just a different type of obsessional thought?

So really… I think it’s an OCD compulsion of avoidance…

or maybe I’m just making excuses…

I don’t know.

My worst obsessional thought is that I’m not a good person. That I am in fact evil. By avoiding reading my Bible and praying… I don’t really have to think about good vs evil… I just have to think about getting through each day… being responsible for my actions… and only doing things that are morally right.

Whether it is an OCD compulsion or not… it would be a lie to say that I’m not avoiding God. B/c I am. There is no doubt. I don’t want too. I just don’t know how to stop…

And now I’m freaking out that I’ve said something blasphemous and that God will never forgive me. Urg.

How I wish God would speak to me in a way that I could truly without a doubt understand.

I need His comfort.

But if He has forgiven me (for my stupid OCD thoughts)… exactly what does that mean?

I really just need to open up my Bible and read…

my Bible is sitting right next to me… but I have yet to do so…

 
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Posted by on July 5, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Forgiveness and the Past

I have always considered myself to be a firm believer that everyone should be forgiven if they ask for it.

People make horrible decisions all the time and regret them afterwards. Wouldn’t it just be a better place if we were able to forgive each other if someone ardently wanted that forgiveness? I mean we shouldn’t be going around forgiving people who don’t see the error in their ways or don’t mourn for what they have done. But those who have truly seen the light and have changed… we should forgive them right?

I really don’t know anymore…

I feel there are awful things that I have done. Part of my OCD is that I never see myself as a good person. I know what it feels like to be hopeless and to believe no one in the world could ever care about you. It is such a horrible feeling that no words can do it justice.

So I should be willing to reach out to those who have never hurt me, but have hurt others but have asked for much forgiveness from all parties involved. right?

This would be a lonely world if no one could receive forgiveness from anyone on earth.

 
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Posted by on April 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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