To Forgive Is Not To Forget

It is to let go of what no longer serves.

During her life, my mother would sometimes tell me things she would never told anyone in my family. Sometimes I wish she didn’t tell me certain things, but I cherish the closeness.

It was like our little secrets. A little world of our own and we were cocooned in. No one could get in and neither of us wanted to go out.

The sacred words exchanged between a mother and a daughter.

She would tell me things about certain people I should be careful of, dangerous people with smile on their faces and a knife behind their backs.

She would tell me stories about the past. The family history.

Certain stories evoke certain feelings. Some induce happiness, some — sadness, anger, major disappointment.

All the time you grew up, spending your life thinking you knew someone well when suddenly the image collapsed. A house of cards blown by the hot air of whispers. The word upsetting did not even cover what I felt as I watched my trust demolished.

You start thinking, how can people do this? How can people be like this? The feeling of disbelief eventually leads to pain and feelings of hurt. This is the point when forgiveness lingers somewhere in your heart, waiting for the course of its fate.

Here’s the thing about forgiveness.

So many people misunderstand that in order for forgiveness to take place, it has to be asked by the person who does wrong.

I went down that road and had to do a massive detour.

Forgiveness will lead you to happiness, the freedom of the heart and mind, You don’t wait for it. You walk towards it on your own. The people you forgive doesn’t have to know that they have been forgiven if they don’t ask. Sometimes, you have to do it yourself, for yourself. Not for anyone else.

Everyone seems to think that you have to be a saint to forgive. Especially if the bad deed happens to be quite a severe one.

You don’t need to be a saint to forgive a deed that seems unforgivable. Forgiveness is not the ability to forget the wrong things that had been done to you.

Forgive, but not forget.

Every single thing that has been done to you serves a purpose to teach you a lesson. If you forget, what’s the point? The same thing might occur again in the future and the cycle of learning would begin all over again.

Forgiveness is not about forgetting the wrong that has been done to us. It is understanding that holding grudge will do us more harm than good. It is trying to put ourselves in the shoes of the wrongdoer and try to understand the motivation behind the action.

When we understand those two things, forgiveness comes naturally without us having to force ourselves to be noble (this one takes a lot of effort and energy, and might lead to resentment instead).

We don’t have to forget.

Why would we? We have paid the price, the least we can do is keep the goods. But let us hold no grudge and bear no hatred. Let whatever wrong done to us serves as a lesson for a better future.

Forgive yourself by forgiving others.

Grudge is like a bag of rocks you carry with you at all times. They are useless deadweight. Throw them into the river.

Let it go. Forgive and spare.

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Writer by heart. Teacher (English, Yoga, Pilates) by trade. Avid reader. World traveller. Model. You can reach me at

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