Forgiveness

I was talking with a friend today, and he celebrates Yom Kippur. I have friends who are Jewish, but I haven’t asked enough about the holidays and traditions that are part of their faith. With the passing of Ruth Bader Ginsburg recently, I have been thinking a lot about how she expressed her faith through a dedication to justice – to be sure voices were protected by laws. Jewish faith has been more present in my mind this week that my otherwise ignorant ass will admit.

The month before Yom Kippur is the month of forgiveness. Fuck. I am late to that party. Yom Kippur is on us. Here we go…because I can absolutely get on board with the annual (if not more often or constant) evaluation of wrongs to be righted.

  • For my love, I am sorry for hurting you. I am sorry for my lack of forethought and consideration for your beautiful heart and the soul that you entrusted to my care. I am working to be the best version of myself I can be for you and for us. I am sorry that my communication needs feel like oppression for you sometimes. I am sorry for anything I have ever done or said that made you even barely question my love for you. Please, hear my apologies, and don’t shush them away with discomfort. I mean them, and you need to hear them in order to forgive me properly.
  • For my local, I am sorry I couldn’t offer you all of me. I should have seen in advance what power dynamics and that responsibility would feel like for me, and I am so sorry for the pain that was caused when we had to let go. I am so grateful for what we have and who we are, and for the understanding that has come from that hurt, but fuck. I am sorry for the hurt too.
  • For my former lovers – the lawyer and the musician… my intensity caused you both pain. I didn’t tell you that you were hurting me when you were, and I let you hurt me and make distance. You didn’t see it, and I didn’t tell you. I am sorry for keeping that secret.
  • For my husband, I am sorry for doing emotional work for you for two decades and then stopping without warning. That pivot was hard on you. I am sorry for the pain I am dragging you through now, and the pain that is still to come. My abilities are very compromised, and our process will be difficult. I cheated on you…many many times. I am sorry for that pain whether you know about it or not, though I am not sorry for the affairs that were essential to my process. I am sorry I wasn’t strong enough to both care for my own needs and yours.
  • For my children, I am sorry for the impact my current crisis has on each of you. I am not present for dinners and processing and life in the way I would choose if I could. I love you both and I want you to learn the strength I lack.
  • For my friends, I am sorry for the emotional drain that I am on each of you lately. You worry about me, and there isn’t anything you can do to help. I have caused you pain by shutting you out, but I have learning that has stretched me beyond being able to handle your well-meaning concern.
  • For Mom and Grandma, I am sorry my life makes you embarrassed. I am sorry you worry about me and that causes intense stress. I am sorry I am not able to offer you comfort.

Here is the rub in all of this…I look back at lists of atonement for things…and I am apologizing for taking up space. There must be a handbook for healthy atonement practice. And how do I forgive myself for the pain I have brought into my own life? How do I ask for and offer grace when the hurt is ongoing?

Oh, my heart, how do I atone for the cuts I inflict?

What ointment will heal, treatment’s positive outcome predict

My heart, I did this to you knowing the pain

I, self, me…my own apology’s fruitless refrain

Let me use my own fingers to paste firm my own heart

Let me use my own lens to see gritty debris picked apart

Please let the sea salty, winds wailing, and moans nauseated abate

Let self love and forgiveness in through the rusted locked gate

I am sorry, my self, for the wrongs and fright

Please forgive, my self, and atone to make right.

Developing…

I write oddly, I think. It leaks out sometimes, blurts out sideways sometimes, and other time it pours through the levy destroyed. Lately, I cannot contain it. I am stressed and saturated in feelings. I wrote this when I was talking with my love tonight, and I want to develop it:

Faith slower restored

Blinding pain not ignored

Energy lost, floored

Tears, endless, poured

As with any idea, theme, melodic idea, or artistic expression, development is magic. The first iteration is inspired although particularly raw in its crudeness. There is a vulnerability associated. The idea takes on growth, play, improvement, work. It struggles and flexes and trembles as it stretches. It fails sometimes.

I had an idea, to explore my own sexuality and my willingness to be open, honest, and vulnerable. As I developed that idea, I met people and I learned. The past several days, the development has broken down. I want to crawl back inside myself and stay there.

Faith slowly restored as debilitation cannot be ignored

Energy lost, my independence floored, while tears endless are poured

Bleeding heart, tunnel bored, to hemorrhage hopeless insecurity scored

Please hold me on beach shored, so water can clean the past torrid.

I just want to be on the other side…

I am paralyzed with fear, uncertain obstacles in blindness

blindness with other senses impaired, nothing left to right my navigation

Which way to the other side? What good is the compass named kindness?

Kindness crippled and marred and scared with fearful indecision

I just want to be on the other side…

All information is good information, to further inform my choices

choices filled with pain and the information missing feels load bearing

How much on my head will fall if I fail to understand the voices?

Voices shouting, angry drooling, the ramifications so obviously glaring

I need to drag myself to the other side…

Oppression takes so many forms, masks and pretending I am okay

I am not okay today, but maybe I will be okay tomorrow

Tomorrow is hope and that hope I will borrow to survive this day

I need hope, faith, I will pull the credit, deep debt borrow

Please, let this be enough to get me to the other side…

Stand by my side, have my back, hold my hand

Lend me your stamina and your endurance

Be with me, one with me, my tribe, my band

I need help to make this journey, to take this chance

Hold me while I get to the other side…

I am going to falter and fall and lose my shit, lose it all

All feels lost in the rubble and I am flat under its weight, on the floor

Cannot see beyond glaucoma haze to the future clear crystal ball

Cannot open the window painted shut, cannot look at mirror’s broken cut, cannot crawl through the door

I need to be carried to the other side…

Today…I want to run and the plans are detailed and intense. Fight or flight impulse has me tearful as I talk to a lawyer and say I want nothing of what my marriage has to divide. I want absolutely nothing other than to survive this. What do people do who have no money or support systems? What on earth do people do? I had a one hour long consultation with a divorce attorney today…and my entire being is imploding. I am coping with stress by vomiting words. Then I will stuff it, work, go home, and pretend that I am fine.

I am not fine.