For Giving

Posted on | April 27, 2011 | 13 Comments

When I was younger, I spent a lot of time waiting tables.  If you’ve ever waited tables, you know that it is one of the most frustrating jobs you could ever do.  People take food very seriously.  People take lunch breaks very seriously.  In general, people take everything about eating very. effing. seriously.  And for whatever reason, people who are generally very nice and well behaved seem to leave all that at the door when they sit down to eat at a restaurant.  They speak to the servers as though they are gum on a shoe.  They yell.  They berate.  They make you feel like you are so stupid for not automatically knowing that they didn’t want mayonnaise ON the sandwich. They assumed it would come on the side, like at their own house, and how dare you not read their mind and know that.

So when things got really tough, my fellow workers and I would look at each other knowingly and smile.

“To the walk-in.”

The walk-in freezer was, well, very cold.  It was in the back of the kitchen and full of boxes of random and assorted restaurant “needs.”  It was also, conveniently, sound proof.

You could go in the walk-in and scream your head off and no one cared.  You could yell obscenities and stomp your feet.  You could say exactly what you thought of table 22 and their children’s children.  You could just let it all out.

How many times in life do you find a place like that? A place where you can be 100% yourself, with all your frustrations and all your anger whirling out of that safe place in your soul and into infinity? It was freeing.  I never left the walk-in with anything other than a smile on my face.  I never left the walk-in wondering if there was more to say.

I just left it all out there with the frozen desserts and hamburger meat.

My therapist told me something amazing today.  When we were discussing how hard it is for me to open up about what is really going on in my heart, and how I wish it were easier for me to stay mad, she told me this… forgiveness is not for the person you offer it to.

Forgiveness is just for giving.  Not forgiving.  For. Giving.  You give it, and then you give up the anger.  It is for giving up.

And I love that. 

I am all for giving up.  I am giving up my anger.  I am giving up my loss of control.  I am giving up the desire to hurt other people the way they’ve hurt me.  I am giving up the need to explain why this is happening.  I am giving up the need to put a bullet point and foot note on getting divorced. 

I am giving it up.

I don’t have to carry the angry around with me to know that this marriage is not the right place for me.

I don’t have to carry the hurt around and beat myself until I am black and blue with the memory of what he has said and done.

I don’t have to carry the burden of making everything work out for the best, however that is.

I am all for giving that up.

And in it’s place, I will tuck away for a bit.  I will slide back into a safe place, a soundproof memory, a steel-framed heart… and I will say the things I need to say.  I will cry the tears I need to cry and then I will pack it all away with my wedding pictures.

I will forgive.

And then I will move forward without him.


13 Responses to “For Giving”

  1. TheNextMartha
    April 27th, 2011 @ 6:22 pm

    Amazing. I hope you feel lighter.

  2. Ms Diva
    April 27th, 2011 @ 6:31 pm

    You are a rockstar!!! There is someone special out there just waiting for you. I know, because my someone special was waiting for me…..

  3. Heather
    April 27th, 2011 @ 6:31 pm

    That comment from your therapist is very poignant and speaks to me. I think in general I need to do a better job of forgiving people for the things about them I wish I could change, but can’t. Once we accept it, we can deal with it in a healthier way without anger and despair. And hopefully they can do the same for me, because I am hopelessly flawed…

    *hugs to you and J*

    Hang in there…

  4. Sara
    April 27th, 2011 @ 6:48 pm

    Yes. Give it up, and maybe even give it away.

    You’re a good person, you don’t need to be carrying all that around with you.

  5. Mrs.TrophyWife
    April 27th, 2011 @ 7:04 pm

    So true. So beautiful. I hope you’ve found a peaceful place in your mind.

  6. Katie
    April 27th, 2011 @ 7:46 pm

    You continue to amaze in so many ways. You are an amazingly strong woman!! I hope as you give it up, you will feel a lightening in your soul. You and J deserve to have peace, joy and happiness!!

  7. Catherine L
    April 27th, 2011 @ 7:54 pm

    I love it!
    “To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” -By someone smarter than me

  8. Betsy
    April 27th, 2011 @ 8:24 pm

    Profound. Thank you

  9. Keiko
    April 27th, 2011 @ 8:31 pm

    Just teared up reading this. I. LOVE. U. Hang in there. Thinking about you all the time. (HUGS)

  10. Momalegal
    April 27th, 2011 @ 8:33 pm

    You effing rock! I wish I had a walk in freezer right now. Good for you, girl. You deserve all you can dream of, and more.

  11. Jess@Straight Talk
    April 27th, 2011 @ 8:39 pm

    So right. I hope that you are able to forgive and move forward so you can grow, whatever happens after that you will deal with it with grace and southern charm, I’m sure 😉

  12. Jessica @ Raising an Owlet
    April 28th, 2011 @ 2:14 am

    awesome. so great. seriously.

  13. buffi
    May 10th, 2011 @ 9:33 pm

    I know you wrote this several weeks ago, but I am going thru a very similar situation. A friend sent me a quote (by whom, I don’t know): “Refusing to forgive is like drinking poison & expecting the other person to die.”

    Very true.

    Also, I SO need a walk-in freezer.

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