This is about love and pain.

There were 30 posts that came before this one — thirty. And not one of them advanced past the draft stage. I didn’t question it at first as I watched the drafts pile up. And then, I did. What about these things I wrote make me not want to share them? Why did something stop me every time my cursor lingered over the “publish” button?

There were many reasons I didn’t post for a couple of months. Many of my drafts were deeply personal. Many of them were angry. And I couldn’t allow myself to post those angry drafts full of my pain because I’ve been trying this thing: it’s called unconditional love. Not going to lie, it kind of sucks. It really hurts, and it makes you lose all of your pride. It’s not that there isn’t a time for anger, it’s just that now is not the time. Now is the time to try something I hadn’t tried.

It was a few months back the idea of unconditional love crept into my head. What did that even mean? It took me a long time to sort it out, but I knew I needed it. I had a lot of hate in my heart. Sometimes, I think it’s still there. I wondered why I couldn’t get past it. Why was all of my pain so real, and ugly, and raw every single day? Why didn’t it go away? I did all I could. I made new friends. I did new things. I was happy. But even in my happiness, something inside of me was still broken. And it wasn’t something I broke.

How do you fix something like that? How do you heal things people do to you that break you so much, it doesn’t matter if your parents get divorced, you’re failing classes, or your summer internship might fall though because no pain will ever compare to the pain they inflicted upon you?

This unfixable pain? It’s because I’m human. And you’re human. We’re all just people trying to get along in this messy, beautiful, oftentimes terrifying life. I wanted to forgive people. And by forgive people, I don’t mean let’s shove everything under a rug and act like my life is perfect. I mean, remember what they did to me but still treat them like a person. Treat them like their human. Treat them as they deserve to be treated by anyone else — loved.

That is not weakness. It’s society’s lie that if you care about people who hurt you, it means you’re the one who’s messed up. It means you’re not strong enough. I am strong. And, at the same time, I’m able to care about the well-being of people who hurt me. I am able to cry in my bed when I feel all the pain rush back but at the same time abstain from lashing out at the people who hurt me and take the opporunities to show love that I might never get again.

It hurts a lot, but it doesn’t matter what I want because I didn’t get to this point on my own. God helped me get to this point. It matters what he wants. I can blame God all I want for all of these sucky things I have to go through, but I know they happen for a reason. I’ve seen the reasons, and I know there are more to be revealed.

Maybe this pain I have will never be fixed. Maybe one day God will fix it some miraculous way. But, each and every day, I’m getting opportunities to love people who hurt me. I’m getting opportunities to get closure and open new doors. And if that’s the least I can do, I think I should do it.

That’s what’s weird about life — unconditional love — forgivness. It’s never easy. But it’s worth it. It’s worth it at the end of the day to know you gave it your best. Once. Twice. Three times. An infinite number of times — and even if your best is never good enough in a person’s eyes, it doesn’t matter. Because in God’s eyes, with his help, I am enough. You’re enough. And that’s all we need.

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