Friday, March 27, 2015

The Apology Extremes

The other day when I came home, my hide-a-key was in the lock in my door. After looking around my apartment and finding everything was intact and un-stolen, I relaxed and continued with my evening. I knew it was my friend who left the key in there, I wasn't worried and I wanted to address it with her. There's something in my house that she'd been using lately, she'd been coming over often, when I was home and when I wasn't, to use it. When I saw her again soon after, I told her I wasn't comfortable with her using that thing so much, and that the key had been left in the lock. "Oh shit," she said, left, and came back a few minutes later to give me a really nice pair of earrings.

A different friend of mine told me a story recently about saying something she regretted. After she had said it, she apologized and then noticed in herself the urge to apologize again. She forced herself to sit with the uncomfortable feeling that she wanted to cover-up by over-apologizing and eventually, it passed. I totally related to her story, and I thought my friend was way cool for her consciousnesses of her feelings and how she handled them.

Usually when we mess up, it's uncomfortable. There's great value in an apology, an acknowledgement of awareness of an offense. I believe in awareness' power to transform. I also believe in letting go of what I can't control. When I screw up, I can say I'm sorry, and I can work to change my behavior, and I can't force anyone to forgive me.

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