In these last few weeks I have learned a lot about myself as a person, but I also have been hit by a wave of regrets. For the last 19 years I have been of the most selfish persons to exist. I have only ever thought about how I could benefit and how other people have made decisions with negative consequences that have affected me. I never once have given thought to how I may be negatively impacting someones life, or how those ill feelings I have held have restricted our relationship. So, I would like to apologize and admit that I have been in the wrong.
First and foremost I would like to express my sincerest apologies to my parents. Not only did you give me life, a fantastic and comfortable life, but you have never ceased to love me, even when I wasn’t easy to leave and wasn’t loving to you. For the longest time I have only ever seen your flaws and have let your mistakes ruin my life, when in fact, they didn’t have to. Two summers ago, the both of you were struggling and I wasn’t the daughter I should have been. I only thought of myself and how I was struggling. I let my pain eat at me, and I refused to think of anyone else. That should have been a time when I supportive and loving. I shut myself away, and barely spoke to you the way I should have. I let my pain- that should not have been existent- get in the way of our relationship. For the last two years I have been fighting seeing how wrong I was. I didn’t want to admit that it was me who should apologize. Instead, I waited for the two of you to make things right with me. You made things right with each other, and I expected you to do the same for me. But recently, I have been stuck with this feeling of guilt and dread. How could I have felt this way towards the people that raised me and loved me? The moment I realized that it was me who needed to make amends I saw you both in a completely different light. Dad, you are one of the strongest people I know, and not just physically, but mentally and emotionally. I tried thinking of everything you have been through and I was overwhelmed because not only did I have a hard time imagining it, I had a hard time believing anyone could go through that and be the amazing person you are. Mom, you are a saint and looking back, you only ever did things for other people and not for yourself. You have the biggest heart out of anyone I know and you never fail to love and help somebody who truly needs it. I want the both of you to know that not only do I hold you in the highest esteem, but that I aspire to be like you-whether or not it is possible.
The next apology that is needed is to my two oldest brothers. I used to blame the two of you for my problems, and really, I had absolutely no right. Your struggles were yours, and I used those as an excuse for my own struggles. I so deeply sorry for harboring those grudges against you because it held me back from loving you two the way you deserved it. I refused to take responsibility for my own actions and would constantly tell myself that if maybe you hadn’t gotten into an argument with dad, or if maybe you had done what you were supposed to then things would be easier. But truth be told, I have no concept of you experienced and what you were going through personally. I also want to apologize for using the Church to judge you. First of all, it is not my place to judge and I still did it. Second of all, that isn’t what the gospel is about. I thought that I was righteous and placing judgments on you. But that isn’t what Jesus would do. I know that now. I should have tried to understand you and let you know I was there, and most importantly, I should have loved you a whole lot more than I should have.
To JC, for so many years I thought of you as the example not to follow. But that is so wrong. I know you’re not perfect, but I want you to know that I’m not perfect either, and I do not see myself as perfect. I think I always held that against you whenever we would fight. I would throw it in your face all of the things you had done, but I hadn’t done, thinking I was somehow better than you. But you have only ever displayed your love for me, and I never could see it. You amaze me because of the person you have come to be, and I’m sorry for never seeing the person you really are and were. You were always so willing to spend time with me and to talk to me, and I never made the time for you when you needed it.
As I learn more about how the family system works, the more I understand my own family. I’m learning the ways that I should be treating you. I’m beginning to appreciate my parents more for everything they have put aside to raise a family. Most of all, I have realized that a family doesn’t have to be perfect to be a family, but its the imperfections and flaws that bring us closer together if we are willing to accept one another and learn to forgive each other.