~Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future. ~Paul Boese
I think one of the hardest things to do in life is forgive those that you feel wronged you and to forgive yourself. I have always heard the saying growing up that if you forgive you must forget as well. This was the thing that I struggled with so much, because logically is makes so sense to completely forget something that someone did to you and act as if it never happened. Because of this I have found it hard to forgive because I could not forget and to do one without the other would be very untrue based on what I was taught. Recently I have come to learn and understand that it is okay to forgive without forgetting. We do not have to forget that someone harmed us and pretend that it never happened. But we do need to forgive if only for ourself. It helps lift weights off our shoulders that we do not have to carry if we can come to terms with what happened and forgive. This includes ourself!
The other hard part of forgiving for me, is forgiving someone who did not ask for it and does not care that they hurt you or caused pain in your life. I really do struggle with this because it is hard to forgive someone who does not give a shit anyway. But I also understand that the only person who is still in pain and being hurt by whatever careless, uncaring thing the person did is only hurting me if I cannot let go of it. So I am working hard on my new practice of forgiving everyone that I can, even those who did not ask for it. It gets easier each day and I have noticed that the more I can forgive, including myself, the less heavy and weighted that I feel. Forgiveness take away the darkness and brings the light back in.