Thursday, August 22, 2013

Accepting the Apology You Never Got

Two words with gravitational heft:  I'm sorry.

So much power and reverberation contained in a few dense syllables.

Whether it is humbly muttered or agonizingly expressed, an apology's wings unfurl themselves with possibility to heal, to repair, to mend.

Hearing those words acknowledges the sprawling hurt that resides in all of us, whether it from an unrelenting bully, an adulterous ex-lover, a backstabbing best friend, the parent who abandoned you.

An apology is a restitched hem around a once-uneven faith in humanity.

Whether it political or personal, so many of us desire--and deserve--spiritual restitution for our pain.

While nothing can magically expunge the soul-crushing events from our lives, many of us have let go of pain upon hearing those two words.

And yet many of us still tread against riptides of hope for the elusive, heartfelt I'm sorry.

Somehow we all remember the one apology we didn't get more than the ones that we did.

I know I have.

I treaded for such a long time---exhausted with anticipation and anger--to hear that apology.
I used up so much energy swimming against that brazen, unforgiving current.
Energy that could have moved mountains elsewhere.
Energy channeled into living instead of surviving.

I had always thought that an apology would whittle my tunnel to forgiveness.

But I never quite got one.

So I learned to carve that tunnel anyway--to bestow the gift of healing on myself.
Clinging to weighted, loaded anger only suffocates self-evolution.
Sometimes you have to work with what you've got to create the life you'd always envisioned.

Robert Brault was damn right when he said, "Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology you never got."


That transformative notion allows me to surrender my anger and to readjust the lens through which I view my own life.

All those years I nearly drowned--waiting to hear it--denying myself the pleasure of the sun and the beauty that encircled me.

Those dazzling things were there the entire time.

No, there will never be that apology. Ever.
But there is my forgiveness anyway.
Surrender to these gorgeous cutout sandals
by Aquazzura, made in Italy.
And that tunnel that leads to the other side of silence.

Thrashing in its unapologetic waters, that current will always be there--waiting to swallow me whole.

I accept your un-apology and have decided to leave the ocean.

The view from the beach is so much nicer anyway.


  1. Kim - Very interesting topic and artfully described. The power of the apology is enormous for both the wronged and the apologizer. There have been people close to me who were raised never to apologize, that an apology is a sign of weakness (from Hoboken, of course). This made me crazy and I believe, on the contrary, that the ability to look inward, ackowledge flaw, and ask forgiveness is a sign of strength. Anyway, just my little rif on apologies. Thanks for the provocative topic and for spurring my thoughts. Another posting well done. Mike Valente

    1. Thank you Mike for your feedback! Love what you wrote, Mike. It is so true--so many people we knew growing up have been indoctrinated into believing that an apology equates weakness. I so agree that it is in fact, such a sign of strength instead. Sometimes we have to move on for our own sakes and happiness and surrender to the un-apology. Thank you again!


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