Simplify Your Life Series Part 1: Forgiveness

When I reconnected with my mother after 20 years of not having her in my life, I struggled with forgiveness. I felt a lot of pain because she was estranged from me when I was 5 years old. I didn’t understand why at 25 years old, my mother never reached out to me. She knew I was alive, she probably even knew what city I lived in but she never made it a point to contact me. One year later when I finally reconnected with her I still harbored the pain of wondering why she wasn’t in my life.

When I was a little girl I always asked my grandmother why my mom didn’t want me. I didn’t want to know the process leading up to my mother losing custody, because as a kid that didn’t matter. What mattered was the fact that my biological mother wasn’t in my life. So when we reconnected. I still felt that pain. I shared my feelings with her but I wasn’t as transparent as I could have been at the time.

A few months after us reconnecting I moved to Korea and I got really sick. I caught pneumonia. At the time my mother was dealing with some major things in her life and chose to refocus herself so that she could handle what was going on. I took it as a blow because I was suffering from abandonment issues. So I decided to send her a nice long email giving her a piece of my mind. Did it make me feel better? Yes. Was it the best decision? No.

At the end of the day I felt horrible for lashing out at her instead of just communicating my hurt and most of all fear that she would leave me. When we finally did talk about it, I expressed the core of my feelings and she explained that she had to no intentions of ever losing me again.

Even though that moment passed, I still had the responsibility of forgiving her to remove the burden on my heart that I carried. I knew if I didn’t forgive her I’d probably lash out or cut her off for good if there was ever another issue. So I swallowed my pride and made the decision to forgive her for the past.

I no longer hold this anger or pain in my heart, waiting for her to mess up. Instead, I’m not expecting anything but to enjoy all the great moments we have together. I also know forgiveness is not a one time deal, meaning I have to constantly practice forgiveness by giving my mom a chance and understanding she’s not perfect.

Forgiveness has taken a big weight off my shoulders. It’s simplified my life because I’m no longer carrying the baggage of pain.

Do you share a similar story? Have you decided to forgive? Comment below or send me a tweet, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Originally published at on April 19, 2016.