A Quote – Hear the Words

Jonathan Swift said: “Whoever is out of patience is out of possession of his soul. Men must not turn into bees who kill themselves in stinging others.” (One day At a Time in Al-Anon pg. 20)

This is a passage that I cannot forget. It hit home with me the first time I read it. Through the years before learning boundaries and unconditional love, I absolutely slashed with words, as with a knife, those whom I felt betrayed me, lied to me, smothered me, and abandoned me. I never felt my apologies were enough to be forgiven, as I knew any action against me was my fault. I took the blame. Acceptance of myself was never a phrase in my vocabulary.

I remember going to a friend’s house when very small and my mother reminding me that I was to play as the friend directed, because I was her guest. Later, the friend came to my house, and I was told that she was my guest and so I was to play as she wished. I asked my mother, “When do I get to do what I want to do?” As I recall, I never received an answer. I just tried so hard to please. When it became impossible to achieve, I would let the dam burst with words.

As I became stronger in my faith and my understanding of God’s grace, I realized that I had never reconciled with Mary Lee, the child within her, embracing the ultimate forgiveness. Someone yesterday at bridge commented to me that I always seem relaxed, never tense. I came home thinking about the remark and it felt good. I am not a Pollyanna, I grieve, I feel angry, but I pray that hand in hand with my Lord I will never again be so out of control as to wound another. I am happy with my life and rejoice that I have lived long enough to feel this peace. I miss John terribly but am thankful for the life we shared. He was my rock. My children are wonderfully caring to me and seem proud when I meet a challenge and overcome it. My extended family is loved as my own, and I pray to be worthy of their love. It’s a good day!

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