Operation Stay in love: The Art of F**king Up

by P. Braithwaite

A few weeks ago, I wrote a post on Single Black Male about the time I almost ruined my relationship with The Besticle. I wrote the piece under the premise that sometimes women mess up, but the experience taught me more than that. It was less about what women do, and more about what I do.

Sometimes I mess up.

Most of ya’ll know forgiveness is sort of an obsession for me. It has been a reoccurring focus on this blog as I’ve found myself in situations where I’ve had to work to let go of resentment and pain. I’ve really refined the art of forgiving people who hurt me, but with that refinement comes an ego-driven arrogance.

I forgot what it’s like to be the transgressor.

Sometimes, we need to seek forgiveness from others. Sometimes we say or do things that cause our loved one’s pain. We feel ashamed and we’d do anything to take it back. But we can’t, and so we ask our loved ones to look beyond their hurt and set us free. We ask them to choose love instead of pain.

Today, I’m aware that forgiveness, both of self and others, is an act of supreme generosity. While it is beneficial to everyone involved, it is truly a spiritual gift. No one HAS to forgive. No one HAS to stretch their hearts wide enough to let go of pain. It’s a beautiful thing to do, but it’s even more beautiful to receive.

Being forgiven is an act of love and kindness.

So my thought is this: if there is anyone you are refusing to forgive…someone who has asked for it, and seems to be waiting for you to set them free, think of how you would feel if you need forgiveness from them. Understand the discomfort of standing in front of someone asking them to push their pain aside. And then, maybe, work on letting go of your pain.

Is there anyone you need to forgive?