I still kind of feel like writing that letter. I don’t know if it’s a letter that eventually I’ll actually give to him, or one I’ll just write to kind of organize my thoughts, then rip up; figuring we both made mistakes, we’re cutting our losses, he doesn’t need an apology from me.
Ether way, whether he ends up receiving the letter or not, I was thinking about what I might put in this letter.
And there have been a few times while mind-drafting that I thought, “I shouldn’t have to apologize!” or “What about what he did to me? What about so many times he was inconsiderate?!”
But then, I thought, “Those things don’t really matter.” It doesn’t ever matter what other people do; I should always treat them with kindness and respect.
And I didn’t necessarily always treat him that way.
Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t do anything heinously awful. I didn’t scream at him or say curse words at him. But, I did imperfect things. I was impatient and perturbed and so on. And I feel like I want to apologize for that.
There are two things to remember when it comes to the way he treated me.
1) Even if he maybe didn’t always respect me or my time (which really was my biggest complaint with him), he did a lot of really nice things too. He said a lot of really nice things, and he was a great support system for personal stuff.
(He’s been a great person to lean on during kidney ups and downs.) And I appreciate that a lot. I can’t let bad things outweigh or erase the good things.
2) Sometimes I think about this great tweet by Drew Carey. “My goal is constant love and forgiveness. For me and everybody I meet.”
And I thought that was just so great. No wonder Drew Carey’s so happy. Imagine if we could just forgive. If people didn’t even have to apologize, and we didn’t have to throw their mistakes in their faces. We just forgave them and moved on. I bet we might be happier too. (Or maybe you already do that. But I bet I would be happier if I did that.)
But then comes this overall question I have – how can I be a great person without letting other people walk all over me?
I want to completely forgive this guy for things he did that upset me – even if he doesn’t ask for forgiveness. And I want to apologize for anything bad I did to him with absolutely no strings attached – not to try to get him to apologize back, not to try to start our friendship back up full steam, not for anything else other than to just clear my conscience and hopefully make him feel better/feel valued.
But, if you become this great person who always forgives and always takes at least your own share of the responsibility (if not more), then how do you make it so that people don’t walk all over you?
Does that automatically happen because people change their behavior to match your kindness? Do people who would walk on you just fall out of your life, and people who treat you with kindness and respect waltz on in – since that’s what you’re inviting in with your great attitude?
I really don’t know. I guess maybe if I reach that nice place, I’ll find out. Or maybe Drew Carey will tell me someday how it’s worked for him if we become bffs (or, even more bffs than we already are, of course ;)).