Saturday, September 18, 2010

Seeking real redemption

True redemption.

Humans make it hard for me to really believe in that.

Why? Well, for me – with no apologies to Frank Sinatra – I’ve had more than just a few regrets.

I’m the first to admit it. You don’t have to remind me. I’m not perfect. I do make mistakes. And, sadly, sometimes I make the same mistakes over and over again.

There have been times in my life when I’ve made decisions that I thought at the time were in the best interest for others and myself only to discover later that, well, maybe the original choice wasn’t the best one I could’ve made. Especially when involving those closest to me.

There have been times when geography, circumstances beyond my control, or just straight up life has separated me from some of the folks I’ve loved the most. Sometimes it was in my ability to keep it from happening. Other times, well, it was something I probably could have controlled. And yet it still happened.

There have been a handful of times, though, when I made a conscious decision to simply walk away. For one reason or another, through lots of soul searching on my part, I felt it was in the best interest of those involved to go for the greater good of the situation.

Intelligent people don’t do that, you’re probably sitting there thinking while reading this blog post. Smart people who find themselves in difficult situations do exactly that hoping that, in time, circumstances will become a little better and possibly your paths might cross again when they are.

Or maybe I should call it what it possibly was – a gutless move by an immature kid.
Years later, I look in the mirror and see that I’m no longer who I was. And I find it hard to live with the remorse I have about some of the decisions I made. And find it even harder to live with the fallout from them.

I honestly never knew there was an expiration dates for apologies, but I’m learning the hard way there are. I realize I can’t really expect people to welcome me back into their lives with open arms decades after I left. But I’d like to at least believe in true redemption. I’d like to see a couple of second chances. I’d like to believe lives are big enough to encompass lots of people in them.

Yes, those are very selfish sentences, but I’d like to prove that I am a much better human being today than I was a few decades ago and that trust could be regained.

Is that being too unrealistic?

In no means to I believe our friendships could ever be exactly as they once were. Honestly? I wouldn’t want them to be for had they been that ideal, I would have never felt the need to slip away in the first place.

And in all honesty, one friendship I’m seeking to repair became a victim of simply time and circumstances. I never meant for it to disappear. It’s like, well, life became busy, I thought she was still by my side and when I turned to look, I’d gone one way and she had gone another.

And I could never seem to do enough to fix it, no matter how hard I tried. I’ve found silence at every attempt. And I’ve taken the silence as a sign of rejection. Which has led me to the conclusion that possibly forgiveness IS a lot to expect.

But I can’t stop hoping and praying one day it will happen.

Life is a vapor. It’s brief and it’s, well, unsteady at best. And I’m tired of living with regrets. I can’t quit trying to make amends. I can’t give up. I realize that I probably don’t deserve a second chance, but I’m still hoping that I will be granted what I don’t deserve.

After all, isn’t that what redemption is truly all about?