“Please forgive me. I promise it won’t happen again.”
If those words were an airline’s slogan then I was a frequent flyer, and the whole world seemed to be the travel agent and my sister was my favourite one.
I resented my sister for a very long time; A very very loong time. I have heard it said that resentment is a poison I take hoping that the other person dies. I had died a thousand times when it came to my sister.
The road to forgiveness started when I was sick and tired of playing the victim role or of taking too much poison; and the more poison I took the more she seemed to thrive. I just couldn’t understand it until I started owning my resentment nay hatred. I went into therapy to figure out why I was so angry. I had turned a new leaf in my life, given up the drink, embarked on what seemed an adventurous exciting journey and yet I was still angry at every one, at my sister especially. I couldn’t understand it at all. I had owned my alcoholism and besides, the stuff that I had done was now in the past .Or wasn’t it?
I was increasingly thankful that I didn’t have to hear my words always countered by her “Until when? You are sorry until when next?” I discovered that I had resented the fact that she was my disciplinarian as well as being my sibling. I always felt the justice meted on me was always harsh and did not match the misdeed. I hated her and I was afraid of her. Fear and resentments certainly shut out any peace of mind and hopes of a contented sobriety. I needed help. More than that, I wanted help. The anger was too much and violence was no longer an option. It had got me locked up before.
In therapy I realised that my anger, legitimate or otherwise, was eating me up, it was killing me. I didn’t want to die, not just yet; I had just gotten a new lease of life and I was determined to live it out.
My family denied and continues to deny that I was abused by my sister through her “discipline”. To this day I hear that word, I shudder.
But lo and behold, I prayed, I cried, I made my amends; I said “I am sorry” for the last time when I knew I meant it; I journalled a thousands of pages, I read the self help books, I attended support meetings, seminars, I shared and shared and shared, I lost hope countless of times. Until the breakthrough.
I forgave. I was free at last. I have no claims, and hold no grudges. We are not the greatest of friends but she is now my sister and I her brother .As it should be. As it should have been. I do not regret it all now simply because I learned the power of forgiveness.
The freedom of this true power is she does not realise what it has taken, what I have been through. Maybe one day I will share with her, right now, I don’t need to. Because, I now accept it was all about me; after all I was the one drinking the poison not her.