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Does Saying I'm Sorry Matter?

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I'm sorry seems to be the least used phrase in the English language. I say this because it's not often we hear anyone use the term unless they are asking someone else to say it to them. You know the routine:

You owe me an apology! Why can't you just say you're sorry?

As I get older, I have found saying I'm sorry can at times be difficult to muster, but when I do say I'm sorry my body and mind feel a sense of relief. Sometimes I even feel a little kicky when I say it, just like the time I said sorry to my mother for breaking her favorite Ming vase. She picked me up and swung me around after my apology. Don't get me wrong, she wasn't swinging me around in a celebratory fashion as if I had just granted her a stay of execution. I'm pretty sure she was contemplating the possibility of swinging me out the window, but since we lived in a single level house I don't think the effect would have been what she was hoping for. In any case, after saying I'm sorry I felt the weight of my guilt float away from my tiny frame.

What is curious to me about humans is the fact that we are merriment seekers by nature. One might say we are prone to hedonistic ways given the opportunity. Yet, when it comes to giving ourselves an internal sense of joy by being outwardly remorseful, we stop ourselves from doing it. Is it because we don't want to admit we are wrong? I'm pretty sure in our culture, saying I'm sorry isn't going to make the town gather around and stone you to death, unless of course you live in a third world country and you slept with your boyfriend. In this civilized country, saying I'm sorry for anything that doesn't imply you broke the law could potentially be quite rewarding.

Ah yes, but then there are those pesky other feelings that ride on the coattails of being sorry; regret, and we all know that regret is the evil twin to guilt and guilt is shrouded by the King of your internal fiefdom, Ego. Yes, ego is the true monster in these situations. He is our King, our Lord and our Master who rules every move we make and we are beholden to him for our very existence. He stands between you and your real joy. He is worse then any ex-spouse, ex-lover or crappy childhood. Given his way you would never achieve true bliss because the ego and his ginormous personality will never make room for anybody or any thought other than himself. Do not fret, he is pliable, you just have to be assertive and stand your ground.

The flip side to saying sorry is how the recipient of your apology will respond. Take a divorcing couple; they spend years spewing hatred and misconceptions about each other ad nauseam. They loose friends blaming the other for the loss when in fact their friends are just sick and tired of hearing them fight. Then for years after the divorce whenever they mention their ex it is always sprinkled with a lethal does of venom:

That rat bastard cheated on me. That bitch took half my money!

What they don't realize is they are only cheating themselves out of life by holding on to the anger. The simple solution? Say I'm sorry. I am not being trite, honestly, saying I'm sorry can snuff out the torch of pain associated with anger and hatred. Even if your ex doesn't appear to outwardly accept your apology, I am sure internally they are jubilant because at the end of the day everyone just wants to feel like they mattered. The slippery slope one has to be careful of is overusing the phrase I'm sorry. Saying I'm sorry over and over will eventually wear out its welcome and nobody, especially your ego, will want to hear from you again. So say I'm sorry then release it.

I know, relationships can be tough and sometimes they just don't work out the way we expected. The fairytale can unfold like a Quentin Tarantino movie where everyone walks away with blood on their hands. In these situations saying sorry will probably not make the boo boo go away. But, hang on, there's still hope. If you can't say sorry to the one you hurt then say sorry to yourself. Forgive yourself for your misdoings then find a little spot in your heart and enter a world filled with pixie dust, dreams, and even the possibility of new love. At some point however, you need to divorce yourself from saying sorry and embrace the forgiveness then move on. Lay your armor down and turn away from your enemy, then walk with your head held high.

Be done. Let go. It's okay.

Freedom awaits you. Walk towards the floral meadow and fill your lungs with the fresh air of life. We are after all offered only this lifetime. Unless of course you believe in the afterlife, but really, who cares if there is an afterlife? You are not going to know about it now and if you have had a previous life you don't remember any of it anyway. So, make this life important. I've said it before... Life is a fast moving train; we live, we love, we work and we die.

I'm sorry, but this is the truth...

I wish you all the best my friends

If you have a story to share or a question you would like addressed regarding your divorce or break-up please email us at: agismith@comcast.net