Forgiveness for myself and othersA very wise man said to me recently that I had to be careful not to become intolerant of those who are intolerant toward LGBTQ people and LGBTQ rights. When I become intolerant of them then I become like them. I’ve noticed since then that I’m less upset and angry at what I read and hear. I’m not perfect, but I’m better!

A few years ago I made a terrible mistake by posting something in my blog that was confidential. I was careful to not reference anything that could identify anyone but it was wrong. I removed the post as soon as I realized what I had done (thanks to kind friends who educated me).

I made a public apology on my Facebook page, one of the places I had posted a link to that blog. I was disheartened to see comments from people who wouldn’t believe what I did was not purposeful and was done merely for my own purposes without any consideration of them.

Shortly after that incident I watched the interview Ryan Lochte did with Matt Lauer about the incident he had in Rio in which he vandalized an area of a gas station and then lied about it to the police, to the public. In this interview I believe he was finally telling the truth and apologizing for the harm he had caused. When he was asked how he felt, he said he was hurt. Not hurt that people were disappointed in him but hurt at the harm he had caused. Some people might not understand that feeling but I did. It was exactly how I felt. I felt hurt and shame for what I did as well.

A friend thought it interesting that people who have experienced such intolerance themselves could then be so intolerant of me and it brought me right back to the advice I was given on that.

I need to have forgiveness for myself and others. I realized that I had such a hard time letting go of the negative comments I received because I had not forgiven myself. I am human. I made a mistake. I rectified it and made amends. I won’t ever do that again. I needed to forgive myself. Once I was able to forgive myself, the sting of that negativity diminished. I wanted to be forgiven and I have to forgive those who are unable to forgive me. I have to be tolerant and understanding of those who will not understand me. It’s a tall order! And it’s one I’m still working on.

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