I’ve been thinking a lot about redemption lately, about how people love a good redemption story (almost as much as they love a good underdog story). How many times have we fallen in love with the story of the reformed bad boy or the father who learned to be a real parent to his kids? It’s always heartwarming to think that bad isn’t always bad, that people can change. I think it makes us feel more human in a way.
But, I’ve also noticed something in these stories–and in real life too–the redeemed is always the last one to actually believe that they are changed for the better. The bad boy still thinks he’s unworthy of the good girl; the father thinks his kids would still be better off without him.
Why are we like this? Why can’t we look in the mirror and see the truth? Maybe that’s part of our design. The reliance upon others to see ourselves truly and completely keeps us connected as humans.
I’ve been suffering with the thought of self redemption lately too. I’m fighting with myself to forgive myself and actually mean it. I’ve been wrestling with my impossible standards again. The me I should have been by now is mad with the now me. I expected to be so much further in life by now. I expected to have accomplished way more than I have. Past me looks at present me with irritation more and more these days.
And honestly, I’m sick of all the excuses I give. The real truth is I’ve made bad choices (school-wise, relationship-wise, life-wise) and I’m living with the consequences. It sucks, but that’s the truth. I’m working on making better decisions and being a better me. Part of that journey is taking responsibility for my mess and making a conscious effort not to repeat the past. If that means that I have to let go of people in the meantime, so be it.
I just want to get to the point in my life where redemption is attainable in my own eyes, not anyone else’s.