January 29, 2023

Most of us believe forgiveness is a gift to oneself and not to those who have harmed you. I guess in most cases, pardoning is closure, a way to start again, and a way to live with a joyous heart. Yet in rock bottom moments, forgiving becomes harder, and living with resentment becomes easier the longer we hold on to it.
Is it possible to heal without the need to forgive?
For strong-willed people, pardoning has always been a struggle. Forgiving those who have wronged us is hard, and it has affected how we act around people who have not done us harm at all.
Maybe growing up amidst people who constantly show you the bad in everything plays a big part in a very skeptical personality – that the good things we experience always come with painful price and great sacrifice, or people only care about you because you are momentarily of use. Maybe being awoken to reality as a child diminished the innocence and purity of the imaginative mind – when rainbows and butterflies no longer excite you, when candies lose their sweetness and fondness, and when you no longer believe in pinky promises.
It could also be the root of immaturity, for we find it unfair that the world keeps moving forward as if nothing ever happened, while we are stuck in frozen time – of constant longing, of unspoken sadness.
Whatever the reason for this wretched and resentful personality, most of us still seek the answer to a peaceful heart, amidst the rage, the bitterness, and the agony. Most of us still wish to wake to foggy dawns without a burdened heart. Most of us still long for the feeling of peace, of clarity, and of contentment. But how must one attain a state of happiness, when forgiving seems like an impossible obstacle?
Forgiveness, in general terms, is a decision to set all the resentment, anger, bitterness, and feelings of revenge free. It is an act of letting go of all the heavy feelings of the heart, and starting anew, but never forgetting what you have become of it.
Forgiving is never easy, even to the kindest and most genuine people, for letting go seems harder than holding on, because before all the sorrow and anger, we felt love, care, peace, and happiness. It is hard to let go of the thought of what things were before all the pain and rage. Some even deny forgiveness because it serves as their protection from getting hurt again.
Accepting, on the other hand, is acknowledging what happened. You have embraced it, but you have never forgotten.
In my case, I refuse to forgive the people who have hurt me greatly because I see no reason to. But even so, I accepted what had happened, and turned all that resentment into strength that helped me reach where I am today. I may not have lost grip of all the pain, but I have embraced it and turned them into silver linings, one in which fueled me to be the better person.
Forgiving sets you at ease, frees you from the weights of a heavy heart, but not everyone can be guaranteed that, not everyone can be forgiven. For forgiving is only applicable to those you have once felt love, to those you have shared chapters of your story with. Accepting what has happened is for those who have had no good impact in your life whatsoever, applicable to those who did nothing but harm you.
Is it possible to heal without the need to forgive? Yes, even if others deny it. Forgiveness is not the only way to move forward, it is not the only way to feel at peace. For life is an enigma, and you must find your way around all the struggles coming your way. Do what sets you at ease, and what comforts you most. To forgive or to accept, you decide, but never stay in the same pit hole for too long. The world leaps, and sometimes, you must keep up.