In August of 2008 my ex-husband passed away. He was in a car accident without a seat belt and under the influence of drugs. He had always told me he wouldn’t live to be 30 and he was exactly 30 when he died. The news of his accident and then his eventual death hit me a lot harder than I thought and it was for many reasons. It would be years later before I realized while it still haunts me to this day.
My ex-husband was a drug addict. He cheated on me, emotionally and sometimes physically abused me, but it took a long long time for me to walk away. When I did, I had no contact with him for years. I refused to, because I knew it would be so simple for him to draw me back in if I did.
After years of not talking, I noticed him on Myspace one day (this was four years ago, cut me a break.) I messaged him to sarcastically suggest that he start paying child support and to my surprise, he agreed. I remained cold in my correspondence with him as a way to defend myself, since he once again claimed to be “changed” and “clean.” Apparently he had been clean for over a year, but this wasn’t the first time and I didn’t want to be hurt again.
So, I held onto my anger and my grudge. I had good reason for these feelings, but in the end I am burdened with them forever now. In March of 2008 he began paying small payments. By June or so, the payments stopped and I knew what was up. He had started drugs again. The day of his accident, I wrote him a not so pleasant email that I still regret. I unleashed years of hurt and pain in that email and told him I would take him to court. That night I got the phone call of his accident. To this day, part of me wonders if it was my fault. I know it wasn’t, but I feel awful that that email was sent the same morning of the accident and I pray he never saw it.
The point is, I never got to say goodbye. I never got to say that I forgave him or to clean the slate. If you have an ex, you may say you wouldn’t care. That they deserved the harsh words and it wouldn’t bother you. I can promise you it would. Forgiveness is important. Not for the person who hurt you, but for your own well being. I understand now, that holding onto hate and a grudge only hurts the person doing the hating. Forgiveness is one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself. So the next time you are brooding, remember life is short and just let it go.