“Forgiveness is for Suckas” or as I call it now: “I’m hurt AF.”

For years people have posted these passive-aggressive memes that celebrate the joy of cutting people off, forgiving but not forgetting, and holding grudges tighter than surprise money, and for a long time I looked at those memes and said to myself: Damn right!

I would look at horoscopes and take those social media quizzes designed to feed our egos and steal our information, and I would say: Yeah, I don’t forgive because I’m a Scorpio and we don’t forgive, or Hell yeah, I don’t forgive because I’m not weak — as is evidenced by this quiz I took that categorized me as an Ice Queen. *flex*

Truthfully, though — I’m hurt by the people I can’t forgive.

I’m incredibly hurt by friends and family who I felt abandoned me and betrayed me. I’m so hurt that when I think about those people and those relationships, my heart feels a little harder. My face muscles get a little tighter. My lip curls upward, and my nostrils flare. These tell-tell signs only really happen for a second or two, but they still happen.

My pastor spoke a great deal about forgiveness, and of course I felt like that sermon was made for me, because I have such a difficult time forgiving. I have a difficult time letting go. I have a difficult time moving on. I know who I am. My goal has always been to amend my bad habits in an effort to ultimately change who I am. However, no matter how hard I try forgiveness seems to be the hardest virtue to maintain.

I mean, I get that forgiveness is something that we essential gift ourselves, but that actually doesn’t make it easier.

In an effort to be more vulnerable, I have stopped applauding those mask memes that celebrate being unable to forgive and let go. For me, that’s a big step. I can admit I am hurt. I can admit I am actually disappointed. I can admit that my expectations were too high. I can admit my own mistakes in causing the demise of a relationship.

The next step — actual and true forgiveness — will likely be much harder.

Much, much, much, much harder.