It's been a while since I've posted anything. i guess its a bit like my marriage where i stopped writing in my journal for 18 years while i actually lived life out. so i've been living divorce out. and its been hard. i thought for 1 year that i'd never breathe again. Then for another 2 years that i'd never trust again. For another year thinking that i'd never love again. Throughout it all i never thought i could forgive.
Then i read a book called Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts, which is trust me not a light read. It is 933 pages and i read it over two weeks of travel on a recent birthday trip to India, Scotland and the UK. I had it tucked under my arm and glued to my eyes on planes and trains and on comfy beds in Jaipur at the home of my dear freind Veena's sister in law. She took me in despite the fact i was like a little broken bird. I realised as I read the book that the reason i thought i could never forgive was that i was thinking about forgiving the wrong person. All the time, I thought I should be forgiving my former husband when in reality it was all about forgiving myself. That was a huge realization and one that still makes me cry. Now, the fact that I've actually realized this doesn't mean I've actually DONE it - forgive myself that is - but it isn't about anything I did that was wrong or things he did that were wrong, things that perhaps required forgiveness - but just that life is all about decisions based on one's character and life experience that generate a perspective and response to that specific moment in time, the desire to make things the best they can be. It's hardly ever perfect and on reflection is almost always imperfect. But you do the best you can at any moment in time, and that is absolutley all you can do. My husband's decision to leave me and our boys was the best he could do at that time. It was a perfect storm. It was a brave decision in a sad kind of way for both of us.
So the book. Shantaram. It's an incredible, incredible book. The writing style is like liquid gold, it flows around you and into every cell of your body. His characters make you stop and reflect. You know them by the end of the book or the end of their lives. There is one place that I just had to put the book down and cry. Not sniffle cry but sobbing cry. I met up after my trip with Elana and Ike who actually recommended the book to me and Elana said exactly the same thing happned to her. I put it up there with Atlas Shrugged as my all time most impactful book. It is all about forgiveness - and the last paragraph really says it all. If you are dealing with a divorce or separation, just try to forgive yourself and your man - there is no need to punish yourself for the past you go forward...your destiny is waiting and its probably going to be absolutely nothing like you imagined when you were a child or even nothing like you think its going to be right now...
For this is what we do. Put one foot forward and then the other. Life our eyes to the snarl and smile of the world once more. Think. Act. Feel. Add our little consequences to the tides of good and evil that flood and drain the world. Drag our shadowed crosses into the hope of another night. Push our brave hearts into the promise of a new day. With love: the passionate search for a truth other than our own. With longing:the pure ineffable yearning to be saved. For so long as fate keeps waiting, we live on. God help us. God forgive us. We live on.