I won’t send this email because it’s really not appropriate to do so. I’m going off and making a self-analytical freakshow out of someone else’s pain, and I don’t want to do that. I do want to note this excerpt, however, so I don’t forget it:

It occurs to me that I learned one crucial thing from my own experiences: either you forgive someone with your whole heart, and start over from that point, or you don’t, and end it. I fully believe in shades of grey on just about every subject there is, but I am unable to when it comes to forgiveness.

I could not forgive my ex with my whole heart. I thought I could, and I proceeded from that point on thinking I had. That was my mistake, and not letting go of pain is just as bad a mistake as letting go of love too easily.

I don’t know where that email was going. I had more to say, but I’m not sure exactly what. Right now I am upset by something I have done, or rather, by something I have not yet done: filing the final divorce papers. I understand now that I have been waiting for some message in a bottle that was never tossed into the sea. Squinting into the sun, I kept convincing myself I was catching glimpses of it among the choppy waves, even though I would have no idea what to do with it when it arrived. In fact, I had convinced myself I’d just re-bottle it and throw it back. Regardless, I wished for it, watched and waited.

Realizing that I am worth more than this, that I am no longer defined by words unuttered by another, is another hard-won bit of elementary self-knowledge.

And so tonight, I have papers to file.

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I acknowledge that I live and work on stolen Cowlitz, Clackamas, Atfalati, and Kalapuya land.
I give respect and reverence to those who came before me.