The book A Prisoner by No Crime of My Own has been professionally edited and will be published this year. To pique interest, I will share tidbits from the manuscript with you each Tuesday.
Chapter 13 – An Olympic Race
. . . continued . . .
A hard part of the race has been to believe that I have the right to be away from evil. Far away. That I could remove myself and my children and not have guilt around that. Most god-fearing folks always put this horrific spin around forgiveness. They believe, and did not hesitate to tell me, that to be in God’s will I must forgive. I believe wholeheartedly in forgiveness. What I do not believe in is the way that advice would have kept me and my children forever bound to our abusers through shame and guilt. I do not believe that God intends forgiveness to look this way.
God would never tell a human being to placate evil, entertain it, and try to make it happy. Through forgiveness, the Spirit of Religion would say, you should at least see your parents, try to understand them, be kind, compassionate, and forgive. Importantly to remember, my parents did not ask for forgiveness. Instead, their denial flared with injustice at my accusations.
Isn’t forgiveness letting go of revenge? Letting go of what you want to do to them for some semblance of justice for the pain and relentless agony they put into your life with their own hands and evil devices? I believe in this kind of forgiveness. I honor my parents by moving on and not seeking revenge. I honor them for giving me life so that I too could give life to my children. I honor that.
What I do not and will not ever honor, is the evil that lurks within them. To go back to their dinner table, to meet with them at the holidays, is denying everything I believe. The truth would have to stay in my backpack, hidden away, any time I visited. When I say truth, I am not saying my truth. I am stating the facts. To keep them hidden would have destroyed any integrity I was building for my future. I did not need another religious façade by which to go forward. I was leaving all that behind. This religiosity teaching of forgiveness had intertwined in it this evil notion that now, when I was trying to gain my freedom, I had to give the keys back to my abusers if I was going to be Godly or good. I don’t believe I have to be good. God is good. I just need to stay close to Him and He’ll be my good for me. That’s in the bible and I’m sticking to it. I’ve sometimes questioned if evil starts with, “I’m not that bad. In fact, I’m a nice person. I am good.”
Placate means to calm; to bring peace to; to influence someone who was furious to the point that he or she becomes content or at least no longer irate. This was not my job any longer. I had done that my entire childhood. I do not believe the God who sits on the eternal throne asks that of me. And I know why. You cannot silence or bring comfort to evil spirits. It is impossible. They will never have peace. Both of my parents had the presence of evil spirits. Of this, I am certain. I was also not the only one who could see this.