When I was a small girl I loved heart-shaped ice cream bars, story books read aloud,
and running barefoot all summer long. I remember back scratches and hugs after bad dreams.
I believed the world was good. I knew nothing
of sorrow or regret; that someday I would need to forgive.
As I grew I began to see my father was never satisfied and he was afflicted by a secret rage.
Mother grew sad and afraid, there was no-one to tell; no-one who could help. My world began
to crumble; secrets became bigger than life.
I discovered I could disappear, hiding from him I’d read a book all day long.
And later, hide
in work, shopping or a glass of wine.
Just like Mom, it was safer to be invisible, silent, placid.
I used whatever I could find to make the crushing sadness stop.
After years and years of hiding, love found me. I began to write, to create, to grow things
and finally to heal. Then I found my voice.
By telling this story I would flourish and reach, timidly at first for forgiveness.
At nearly forty I accepted that I was the one Jesus loved. I never believed
that could be true. You can’t be cruel to a person and share that truth.
My secret life of sorrow and lament; the constant melancholy has become something else.
Though I still cannot understand why my father was angry, why life was so hard.
Today, in the early morning quiet, I know who I am now matters most.
I remember, which hurts. I forgive, which heals.
When your grief overwhelms and possibilities are gone, what you choose then matters.
Somehow love found me, but I chose to receive it.
Bad things will happen, I can’t stop them.
In choosing Jesus and hope, I have a world of possibilities ahead.
In choosing to forgive, I live.
by Melody Harrison Hanson. https://logicandimagination.wordpress.com
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