Forgiving does not mean forgetting. I have seen too many people succumb to the bitterness of holding a grudge and not letting it go. Forgiving frees you from a mental prison. Forgiving opens your heart. Forgiving brings light to your dark place. It does not mean that you are weak, that you have caved in, or that you are saying what someone did to you is okay. Forgiving means that you are in a better place. Forgiving means moving on, moving forward, and not allowing yourself to be controlled by past events or someones action. There is no magic formula or prescription drug to forgiving. It comes from deep within your heart and soul.
We have all been hurt, whether it was emotionally or physically. And of course those scars remain and they will forever. You will still remember how you felt hurt, anger, sadness, betrayal, shame, or humiliation. The difference between someone who has forgiven and someone who has not is that those raw emotions have become scars and are no longer open gaping bleeding wounds. Scars remind us where we have been and what our bodies or souls have endured. Scars help create our character but they do not define us. Our actions, what we do with those raw feelings is what defines us. We have two choices: to forgive or hold on to those negative emotions.
When you forgive, those open wounds become scars. They are part of your character, memories, and provide a reminder of what you had gone through. If you, however, choose to constantly pick at the wounds, they will never heal and will only hurt just as much from one day to the next. Your bitterness, anger, depression, hatred, and sadness will continue.
If, however, you allow the wound to heal, in time a scar will develop in its place; a reminder of how far you have come and how you have grown. As your wounds heal, physically or emotionally, your soul also begins to heal. When you let go of the raw emotions and open your heart to forgiveness, you will feel a freedom and lightness.
Holding onto the darkness will only bring you more darkness and pain. Opening your heart to forgiveness will free you from that. Forgiveness is not about the person that wronged you. It has nothing to do with that. Forgiveness is for you. By forgiving that person, you are not condoning their actions or words. You are instead opening your heart, loving yourself, protecting yourself, and allowing you to control your life and destiny. No one else is in charge of you.
You dont forget when you forgive. Instead you take control of your emotions, open your heart, and allow yourself to love and be loved.