Apologizing is Underrated
These letters are the end of my saga with my cast mate from the cruise ship:
This letter is long overdue, but it wasn’t until recent months that I even realized it was needed. I hope you’ll keep reading. I was really, really wrong. I’m so sorry for how I treated you. I still remember what you said to me when our friend was in town and we went over to New Jersey for your family’s get-together. And the email you sent me later. I remember being shocked that you cared so much but I’m thankful because those confrontations have stuck with me and God used them to open my eyes. You said something to me about how wrong you thought it was that I went on and on about Jesus but treated you the way I did. You were right and I knew it. I screwed up. I was a crappy messenger of God’s love to you most of the time. Please forgive me.
…I never got a response to that email. Six years later, right around the new year, I was going through an intense season of healing and was encouraged to make amends with people from my life, past and present. God brought Mike back to mind and I decided to try and reach out to him again…
It’s been a long time. I wanted to ask, I sent you a letter a long time ago apologizing for basically being a terrible person to you during our time on the cruise ship. I’ve been doing some introspection recently and making some amends and I wanted to make sure you had received that email. Do you remember getting that email? If so, good – I meant every word. If not, please let me know. I wish you all the best.
This time, I got a response!
I think I recall getting it and maybe not even opening it cause I was still mad or bitter about things and thought I would have just responded with a fight at the time. But the good news is…I’m not going to respond with a fight now. It’s all totally OK, I totally forgive you for every stupid fight over every stupid thing, and I’m sorry for anytime I made a dig at you, or said something around you I knew would ruffle your feathers. You should also know I never really hated you, I always knew you were a good person with good intentions, which kind of only drove me a little more nuts if I’m being honest.
I don’t like to talk about god with too many people because it’s such a personal thing for me, and everyone seems to have their own slant on things. But without dissecting my faith too much, I want you to know I really do have faith in SOMETHING and feel strongly about it. I think we both have very strong faith in SOMETHING, maybe we talk about it differently, or have different practices and ideas about faith and god – which probably helped fuel an excellent firework show whenever we were in the same room – but none the less I think that kind of intensity in us is something not everyone has, and I’m certainly grateful for it, even if it has the potential to cause a few explosions. And it wasn’t all bad. I remember getting you for Secret Santa that Christmas and thinking “oh this is God trying to teach me something.” Anyway you’re a rockstar Megan Richards, so keep rockin’. This is a great way to kick off the new year and I’m very glad you reached out.
With lots of love,
I totally understand you not wanting to read that email at the time I sent it. Thank you for your message. It was really great to read it and know that all has been forgiven. I never hated you, either. I think the same thing that drove you nuts about me is what got under my skin, too. I knew you had a huge heart and good intentions.
I regret not being able to talk to you then about faith without it being a bad fireworks show. I think God designed faith and each of our relationships with Him to be deeply personal. And that he designed us to be in community that would shape us, for better or worse. Looking back, you’re the person I’m most thankful was on that ship contract with me because in the long run, he shaped me the most through my interactions with you.
I think God loves you a whole lot, seeing as how He made sure I made things right with you no matter how long it took! Happy New Year, Mike.