This week I have been nervous, scared, and downright queasy at times...all leading up to one thing: seeing someone I haven't seen in over 6 years. I wasn't sure what to expect and despite my best efforts knew I couldn't plan or control the outcome. In the weeks leading up to this I have heard varying responses but mostly the negative ones. The ones from people who remember my tears and anger...who only really heard my side.
I learned this week that it can be an ugly eye opener when you have the opportunity to look back on past events with a more unbiased eye...when you can evaluate your actions and reactions. Sometimes you don't like what you see. I kept it all...everything that happened. The idea was to use it as a weapon and then when I gave up the anger and the hurt it just sat there...unopened, unread, collecting dust...until this week anyway. I began re-reading all the emails, all the conversations, all the blog postings...it was an ugly situation all around. I think I was most surprised by how ugly I could get...I didn't realize I had that in me and am sure hoping it was simply a lack of maturity that I was able to be that way. I don't plan to make excuses for anything either of us said or did, but I now realize that I said and did many more mean things than I was willing to admit at the time.
Thank goodness for change that is inevitable. I can look back to a few years ago and pinpoint when that change started to occur. I was sitting in the "Breaking Free" Bible Study at church, listening about letting go of the things that keep us in bondage. I came to a realization during that study that my anger and resentment was on of those things. I resolved to let it go and thankfully had the encouragement of the much wiser women in the group as I started that journey. Now almost 2 years later I think it has paid off...in about an hour my daughter will meet her father for the first time. And for the first time since before she was born, we have been able to talk without arguing and have now been in the same room for 4 hours without killing each other, lol.
I don't think we should ever forget the past, things happen for a reason...maybe to teach us and help us grow. Without what we went through, I don't think I would have changed in the ways I needed to in order to be the person I am today. Likewise, I cannot repay the damage I inflicted anymore than he can. What we can do from this point is take the time to get to know each other now and be careful to treat each other the best we can. I know I have changed in the last 6 years and suspect that he probably has too. So here we are...the beginning of the weekend...we all now have the chance to get to know each other and start fresh.
I keep thinking back on the song "You Are More" by Tenth Avenue North...and thanking God that:
"You are more than the choices that you've made,
You are more than the sum of your past mistakes,
You are more than the problems you create
'Cause this is not about what you've done,
But what's been done for you.
This is not about where you've been,
But where your brokenness brings you to
This is not about what you feel,
But what He felt to forgive you,
And what He felt to make you loved."