To reach her son, asking forgiveness helped
Every now and then, when our family gets together, our son will drink too much, and he ends up telling me, in different ways, what a terrible mother I was. Some of the things he has said sound more like a child talking than a grown man, so I don’t even try to defend myself. They are so ridiculous that I just listen.
These moments, however, are very painful and have caused me many sleepless nights. Unfortunately afterwards I usually don’t know what to do about it. Even when he has not had too much to drink, our relationship has always been a little tense, like walking on eggshells, never knowing if what I’m going to say will make him mad or draw a sarcastic remark.
Finally, after his latest accusations, I prayed for wisdom to know how to mend our relationship. I realized that I needed to see him with new eyes and to really listen to what he was saying, even if it sounded silly.
His words might seem groundless to me, but not to him. This helped me let go of my way of seeing things and understand his pain.
The next morning at Mass it came to me that the only way to get through to him was to ask for his forgiveness. Since we don’t live in the same city, I wrote him a letter and simply asked him to forgive me.
It was very humbling, but very freeing. I was finally able to let go of my guilt, doubt, anger, hurt and sleepless nights. Whether it touched him or not, I don’t know, but something is different. I no longer sense the tension that was once between us.
A couple of months had passed and neither one of us had mentioned the letter, but after I sent him the Word of Life for that month he sent me an email, saying:
“I know we don’t talk much. But I want you to know I miss and love you. Sorry that I don’t always act that way. Keep sending the Word of Life. I like reading it, and I need it. Hope to see all of you soon.”
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