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Forgiveness is a gift of love…..to yourself.

One of  the things I have learned in life is to forgive. It does not matter if the person you need to forgive even knows…..it is a gift to yourself.

I spent years hating my ex husband. The things he put me through…..bankruptcy, many unneccessary dollars in legal battles, and most traumatic…taking my son and refusing to return him.

To say I hated him is an understatement …..I loathed him. Every time I had to have anything to do with him I was sick my stomach.

We met at work. The dating was fast and furious as was my pattern back then. Dive in head first and swim for my life after I hit the water. I had not planned on having a child….I had been told I could not. When I found out I was expecting I was elated. For so many years I had wanted a family.

I just wanted a family. Soooo, we got married. The realization that it was a big mistake came quickly. We separated. He left town. Left me with a huge debt load that forced me into bankruptcy and a small child to raise.

After he had cleaned me out financially he sicced the lawyers in me. The only thing I wanted from the whole deal was custody of my son (with visitation of course). I did get it….after 5years and $12,000.00.

The legal bullying was one thing…I could bear the burden of that easily enough. But when he took my son for the weekend and refused to bring him home, that crushed me. Instead he chose to report me to Childrens Services to no avail. Tried charging me criminally with child abuse and put my son through the hell of being examined for old injuries at the hospital. He finally convinced my 4 year old son to say that I had hit him with a stick and report this to Childrens Services.

I had spent the weekend trying to hire a private investigator to go find him….they would not start until the next week. I finally got it sorted out legally the next business day. Childrens Services found that I had not hit my son and that he had been coerced into saying this horrendous thing. They said that emotional abuse was more damaging than physical abuse. I said I knew that but they would not step in to help me prove it.

For awhile my ex husband had only supervised visits. But that ended in time and I had to ler my son go with him on weekends. The anxiety every time he went was gut wrenching. My son resisted every time he had to go and I had to cajole him into going. I had to overcome my anger and hatred and put a positive spin on  the visits for my sons sake. I had to deal with my sons anxiety and anger. He didn’t understand that if he didn’t go…..I would be in contempt of court for breaching a court order ad face jail time.

It took many years….until my son was of age to only go if he chose to. When I could stand in front of him and say…..’You can’t force him anymore. You need to make him want to spend time with you.’ that the healing began.

I finally realized that holding onto the anger and hatred toward him had no impact on him or his life. It was only disturbing mine. I released the negative emotions attached to him. Decided to choose neutrality. I stopped allowing him to push my buttons. I took my power back.

It took a long time. It took until he had no power to threaten my sons security and emotional safety anymore. It took until the threat of being taken to court again and fighting a legal battle going nowhere was over. But it did come. I sent the balloon of anger into the Universe and cut the ribbon…..watched it drift away and take

It was the most freeing feeling in the world. I felt lighter inside and out. It was then that I truly realized the power of forgiveness. When I talk to him now or have to see him I feel detached calm and empowered. He has no control over me anymore. No ability to manipulate me or my son any more.

He doesn’t even know I forgave him. He would not think I had any reason to be resentful in the first place so that would be a moot point. He would justify his actions. So, the lesson I learned….

Forgiveness has nothing to do with the forgiven……and everything to do with you. Lighten your load and release animosity with love to the Universe. Give yourself the gift of Forgiveness. It truly is the gift that keeps on giving.