An Apology

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Let's talk about mistakes.

And loving yourself. 

And taking care of yourself, despite your mistakes.

If I've learned anything about blogging from every article ever posted about starting a following, it's that your posts should be consistent and engaging. I know that I have definitely not been as consistent as I'd like to be, and for that, limited readership, I'm sorry.

And trust me, that is the easiest apology I've had to make in the last month. 

I recently made a huge mistake and am having to deal with some pretty ugly ramifications.

According to a super awesome leadership retreat I went to in high school, I could move forward in several different ways. I could blame, shame, quit, or own up. Because of who I am, I chose the latter. From how I see it though, if you've been unkind, you can at least be honest. As my brilliant classmate, Meredith, writes:
Always being nice can be difficult, and sharing is hard when you really love your cookies, but being honest is theoretically the easiest thing you can do. It’s what makes us trust each other and end up being able to be nice to others, what makes us want to share our cookies. Lying is a deliberate, deceptive action you have to take. Being honest is the core of everything. Integrity is how people operate, and once you violate integrity, it’s what’s remembered about you.
So, even though my mistake was a huge gap in my character and a display of an utter lack of integrity, I chose to be honest and show integrity in the way that I followed up with the person I'd wronged.

And honestly, it has sucked. Looking someone in the eye and telling them you did them wrong has to be one of the hardest things we, as loving but flawed people, will ever have to do. Of course, we want them to believe the best in us, and maybe even forgive us, but maybe that's not always possible. Maybe our mistakes hit a central tendon in their emotional make up that makes us unpardonable.

Maybe that's okay. Maybe it's okay to cry for longer than people think you should. Maybe it's okay to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps and say, "maybe that's for the best." Maybe it's best to learn from our worst mistakes so that we know why we can't ever repeat them.

And now, on loving yourself. Life is a series of growth spurts. And just like we get physical growing pains, we can get emotional ones too. And just like we ice our pains, we must acknowledge that it is okay to lick our wounds. To draw into ourselves and regenerate before moving forward in daring steps. To snuggle with the most incredible suitemates and friends you could ever ask for. To breathe.

And finally, I think it's most important to realize that just because you're loving yourself doesn't mean that the mistakes will end. In the last month, I've forgotten major assignments, said hurtful things, ignored important calls, and totally ruined a roll of film for my photography class. I ask myself what it would be like if I could just catch a break. And then I watch an episode of How to Get Away with Murder or New Girl, and I feel better. Not "okay," not "good" by any means, but better. Making mistakes literally blows. There's nothing worse than looking something in the face and being able to say "this could have been avoided if only I..." I know. And making repeated mistakes or compounded mistakes feels like there's a huge weight on your chest like how the atmosphere feels when it's about to rain. 

At this point I'm convinced my little cloud has just been condensating and gathering little droplets and at some point, when it's healthy and safe to, everything will spill out and the scorched earth will be washed clean. 

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