In college I was the catalyst that brought 5 people together, that support each other through 2 years of becoming an adult and gaining our various Art qualifications. Penny was a freind of mine from school, Jake and Liam were guys on my Photography course and Matt was on the same course as Penny.
A few months after the end of the course the gang had decided to go on holiday. I was unsure if I was going to go with them as I had set my heart on going traverling and wanted to save all the money I could. They were all disappointed but OK with it, however Jake was not too pleased.
Shortly after returning to the UK I started to receive anyominous letters. I did not tell anyone about the first one. I remember telling Jake about the second one, as I wasthat I was worried because I had traveled with a guy for a while who I then realised was a bit weird and I made my accuses not to travel with him anymore. Jake listened but implied it was nothing to worry about.
When the 3rd letter arrived my parents were adamant that I should get the police involved. I managed to convince them that it was just a joke. When reading the third letter I thought of Jake and I sensed him in the words of the letter. When Jake came over that day I ask him in a jovial manner if he had been sending the letters. Jake said that he had not. I told him that it was OK if it was a joke? Then I said I would like to know as my parents want to tell the police. Both times Jake assured me that it was not him.
I think I got one or two more letters in between this conversation with Jake and meeting up with another friend from Art college who was not part of the gang of 5. At some point during the day it came out that this friend had been given letters by Penny and asked to post them to me from all over the UK. I instantly knew that the letters were typed by Jake who the gave them to Penny who then past them on to someone else. Three of my friends were involved in something that was increasingly worrying me and no one told me!
I did not see much of these friends anymore. A couple of years later I was at a party and Jake was there. He asked if he could speak to me. Jake explained that he had been on a course and that it was good for him to ask people for forgiveness. “So the real reason why after all these years your apologising to me is that you think it will be good for you to know that I have forgiven you?”. Was my reply, suddenly I was really mad and I had to tell him the truth, that I thought he had been selfish not talking it over with me when I found out it was him and I wish I could but I honestly I did not forgive him.
Another 5 years later, I woke up one morning in the house that I had recently brought and I started to think of Jake. I felt extremely hurt and I let myself feel all the pain. Tears rolled down my face for what felt like eternity. I watched my mind play movies of all the good and difficult times the gang and especially Jake and I had had. When the tears had stopped I felt a release but I also felt sick. So I lay in bed and noticed everything that was happening in my body the feelings and the emotions. After a while I realised that I need to forgive myself, I need not analyse what for I just knew that I needed to. So I did. Then I was able to forgive Jake. I instantly felt a huge release and the sickness was gone.
What I realised
That morning I realised that I was holding onto the pain as it was too painful to feel or to even notice. I also realised that since Art college I had had close friends but never trusted them as much as I trusted Jake or the rest of the gang. I had, up to that very moment in bed, felt very let down by them. The truth was that I was letting these held in emotions take over me and ‘darken’ my friendships with others.
I need to forgive myself for holding onto this pain, so I could let it go and open up to close friendships with other people. To forgive Jake was then very easy.
If you cannot forgive someone then the pain that you are holding onto is hurting you more than it is hurting them. Forgive yourself and let go of the pain, so you can fully open up to living your life with joy again.