Last week I went to an event for the Charter of Compassion launch, and it made me think about a couple of things, particularly with regards to the golden rule: treating others like you would like to be treated. One particular statement resonated with me intensely: “Many people don’t want to be compassionate, they’d rather be right.” Karen Armstrong’s words. And boy, was she right on the money. The first person I thought of after she said that, was you. And with super-sonic speed my mind replayed everything that had happened– at least from my point of view — and that had led us to this point. And as incredulous as it might be, now, the whats, whys and hows don’t even matter that much. The bottom line at this point is that it happened.
And so what? That’s what I asked myself. So, am I going to tell myself that I’m not really holding a grudge, yet hesitate to say those three words that could probably make a world of difference even if they don’t rectify the situation? I don’t know. Do we ever know? But when I think about it, if saying those words to you is as hard as it is, what hope do we have for forgiving injustices committed against humanity? Pause . And in the same vein, how do we expect other people to overlook our follies? Another Pause. We never quite know some of these things, do we? Not unless…dare I say it…not unless we try? That sounds more like a question than a statement. It does, doesn’t it?
Well, maybe I have the benefit of confused hormones and mellow music to help along my sensitive mode…or maybe I’m finally doing what I should have done a while ago and saved us both a lot of time and energy. But then again, maybe I’m tryna save my conscience from the guilt that sometimes pulls at its fringes, I don’t know. What I do know is that this is a hard process, and that its taken A LOT of effort to go ahead with this, and put it out there. It’s taken even more effort to leave this unedited and to ignore the fact that others (aside you) might figure all of this out, and judge me. And maybe tomorrow when my chemical levels are back to normal, and I have punk rock playing instead, I’ll consider this a terrible terrible mistake. Who cares? I’m trying not to.
I miss you. A lot. I wish it never ended the way it did, and I wish I’d put my pride away and apologized for how it went down. Truth is, I’ve been bashing myself about it because it didn’t feel right, yet I went along with it because I wanted to hurt you as much as you hurt me. I wanted to make sure you’d never forget. But now, neither can I. Ironic huh? And to think we’re not even talking? It almost seems impossible. But it’s not. It’s real. Sometimes I want to reach out, but I don’t. Because I’m afraid you’ll reject me or try to hurt me again in order to make sense of what you are going through. And sometimes I think that maybe it’s better this way. Us not talking. But you know me, it’s never that simple. I wish we would at least talk or that I could say sorry. Even though in my mind, you should be saying sorry to me instead, and you probably don’t deserve it. That’s my ego talking. I know many times before you did just that. Said sorry. For us. And maybe right now, there’s no us. But you’re still important to me regardless. So although I can’t whisper this to your face, I. am. sorry. I hope that when the chance actually presents itself, I’ll be able to say it. Because ultimately, it’s only a matter of time. But in the meantime, this will have to do. Take care of yourself.
Jemila Abdulai is the creative director, editor and founder of the award-winning website Circumspecte.com. A media and international development professional and economist by training, she combines her business, communications and project management expertise with her strong passion for Africa. Besides writing and reading, she enjoys travel, global cuisine, movies, and good design.