Anger doesn’t really subside for me. Years after the fact I’ll feel the same powerful, moving, crushing rage as if a memory is fresh. I believe it is because I am unskilled at forgiving myself.
After a recent breakdown, I thought about what my closest friends said to me. That I’m hard on myself, critical of myself, and that no one expects as much from me as I do from myself. At first I dismissed these statements as inaccurate, because I don’t make it a habit to share myself particularly deeply with many. However it has come to my attention that I do hold myself to impossible standards.
This eternal rage is because I refuse to accept my mistakes and forgive myself. I cling to the emotion because I associated it with behavior I’m working to change, and I fear forgiving myself dooms me to not only repetition but to eternal repetition. As if to acknowledge that it was okay to make that mistake, that I am somehow promising to do it again.
Though I can see that forgiving myself is the only way to grow and move forward, I still fear that forgiveness will force the lesson, like the wound, to fade. That with time instead of growing, I’ll shrink back into a lesser being. At the moment I’m not entirely sure how to utilize this information. Fear drives me, shapes my behavior and decisions. Knowing what I need to do doesn’t necessarily enable me to act on it.
I am weak, and at times I am volatile. However, I have an open mind and an open heart, and the desire to be better. Giving it my all means being receptive to criticisms of my character, to be willing to acknowledge my flaws, and actively working to correct those flaws.
Even if it hurts a bunch.