My lesson in Humility and hopefully, Forgiveness

Today has been an interesting day. It’s Anti-Bullying Day and I wrote a blog about a few of my personal experiences of being bullied. It was tough to write, but it was one of the chapters that makes up my story and has helped me become the person that I am today. As it turns out, my grade 7 story is shared by someone else, and unfortunately, I was on the other side of it.

I received a reply on my blog post, and it absolutely broke my heart. I read it four times, and then replied privately to the writer, and instead of instantly hitting “approve”, I did nothing. I logged into the back of my blog and read some other comments and replied to a few of them. And some way, somehow, I ended up deleting this particular response. My first thought was, “phew, no one needs to see that” but my second thought was, how would I want my words addressed, so here we are.

Thankfully, I still have the original email, so I’m posting a screenshot of it here for you all to read.

sunny

I know that’s really hard to read, so I’m copying and pasting it here.

Very well written! Good for you for standing up against bullying. It is terrible that you were bullied. I do hope you remember that you were also on the other side of the boat in grade 7. I considered not saying anything but since you are calling out people that you know I feel I had to stand up for myself too. Do you recall writing a note with your friend about how you couldn’t believe the new girl wore the same shirt for two days in a row and then proceeded to pass it around the ENTIRE class? I do. That was my first taste of bullying, it knocked the wind of an already awkward shy girl. I put it behind me and realize now it was probably what you had to do to get some revenge for being picked on yourself. Before you call out everyone in your former Junior High school please know that some of us know exactly how you felt.

Now you know why my first instinct at the mistaken delete felt “good”. To say that I feel ashamed of what I’ve done is a gross understatement. I actually still cannot even believe that I did such a thing, and don’t remember doing it at all. But if this person says that I did this, I need to own my part in it.

So “Sunny”, whoever you are, this response is for you.

Number One. Thank-you for writing this reply, I’m sure it was really hard to do and I so appreciate your willingess to put yourself out there.
Number Two. I am so very sorry for hurting you. I honestly can’t remember doing that, but I’m not going to say that I didn’t do it either. I’d love to say that I hope you were right and that I did it to take the attention off myself, but that would be a total cop-out. If I did that, there is no excuse and it shouldn’t have happened.
Please know that if I could go back and redo that moment in time, that I would. When I read your words, I literally felt like throwing up. It makes me sick to learn that I made someone else feel the exact same things that I was feeling. That is so not okay, and I am so sorry. Please forgive me for being a part of something that so obviously affected you deeply but thank-you for giving me the opportunity to set it right.

Today has been a day of humbling for me. As an adult, I conciously make the effort to choose better because I know the pain that bullying and judgement can cause. But today, this one simple act of courage taken by someone from my past has forced me to once again look in the mirror.

Thank-you for not expecting me to be perfect and thank-you for forgiving me in my weakness when I wasn’t yet strong. Your words affected me deeply, and I promise you, they will not be taken for granted.

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5 thoughts on “My lesson in Humility and hopefully, Forgiveness

  1. shandracarlson February 27, 2013 at 10:11 pm Reply

    You my friend, are one of the bravest, most transparent souls on the planet. Honourable and forthright. I am so very grateful that I have a person of your caliber as one of my BFFs (yes, I used that acronym!). Love you!

    • this mom's got something to say ... February 27, 2013 at 11:10 pm Reply

      Everyday I hope to be better than I was yesterday. I know this happened a really long time ago, but I hate that I hurt someone for no reason. I need to practice what I preach, and I’m hopeful that people will see “me” in all this and know that I’m trying too.

  2. violetwire February 28, 2013 at 7:27 am Reply

    Kuddo’s for owning this and publicly too. It is so hard to look at ourselves and see the things we hate about the choices of others. We all should, we all could have this same conversation with someone from our past I am sure. Bullying is one of those things that make my blood boil, I hear about it alot. I see it all the time and like you I am sure I was a part of it too. Way to go April, knowledge is power.

    • this mom's got something to say ... February 28, 2013 at 9:18 am Reply

      I’ve received so many messages and emails telling me that what I did really wasn’t a big deal but reality is, I hurt someone. I’m thankful for the opportunity to try and repair something from so long ago and hope that they’re able to forgive me. 100% without question, lesson learned.

  3. MikeW February 28, 2013 at 10:36 pm Reply

    Excelling truth. Wow. By putting it out there, you reached way back and opened up a route to be humbled and for mutual forgiveness. By publishing this, you opened the door to both. What an auspicious event. So many things I wish I could amend. Some say pay it forward, and some are given the gift of being able to bring goodness from the past to the present and into the future.

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