The Power of Forgiveness

Tiffany - Lexington, Kentucky
Entered on December 10, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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The Power of Forgiveness

Friends are met through every walk of life. They are not just acquaintances, but honest- to-god friends. Most people look for someone to call a best friend, and just when I think that I have found a friend to last a lifetime, I encounter problems. But my mom always told me “to forgive even when someone hurts you the most because if not then that person still has the power to make you mad.” Therefore, I believe in the power of forgiveness.

It was the first day of third grade. As I walked into class, I was in a whole new environment surrounded by unfamiliar faces. That day everyone in the class bought a game to play. My game, Gooey Louie, was positioned in the corner of the room. A small brown-skinned girl with long sandy brown hair approached my game. “Is your name Jasmine?” she asked as she sat down. I answered by saying, “No, my name is Tiffany but do you want to play with me.” As we started playing, I learned that her name was Brittany. We had a lot in common, both of our mom’s names were Monica and our favorite color was pink. It was the start of a true friendship.

We were inseparable. Every weekend I was over at her house or she was at mine sometimes even staying a week or more. Our mom’s would always say, “You all can’t get enough of each other.” She was like my sister that I never had who would help me through my problems. Someone I could stay up late with talking about boys, school, or our personal lives. During summer vacations and holidays, she was there. Brittany and I promised to never stop being friends. However, it became clear that promises aren’t precious enough.

As we entered high school, our friendship went downhill. Brittany met new people and entered a relationship. The people she hung out with were considered part of the “in” crowd. They were either the football players that wore the purple and gold letterman jackets, the cheerleaders with their purple pom-poms and short skirts, or the dance team with their black and silver jumpsuits. They were the type of people that betrayed their friends. As time went on, I heard that she was spreading rumors about me.

There was a boy by the name of Stephen who became one of my best friends. We spent time together whenever he or I were not at work. On the weekends, he always came over and occasionally we would go to the movies or out to eat. Brittany had a crush on Stephen, so when she found out that we had become close she was upset. She thought that I was trying to steal him from her. From then on, she spread rumors about me, saying that I was fake and couldn’t be trusted. She told others, whom I associated with, not to bring their boyfriends around me because I would try to take him from them. It even got so bad to where she wanted to fight me because I wanted to take Stephen to prom.

When I confronted her about the issue, she confessed to the vicious lies. I was hurt that someone so close to me would betray me like that. I trusted her with my darkest secrets and she went behind my back and spread them to everyone in the school. The damage she had done tore at my heart for weeks. To this day, I still do not understand why she would do such a thing. Furthermore, she said she was sorry and as her friend I forgave her.

One apology turned into another. A number of incidents occurred when we were supposed to go somewhere, but she always cancelled for her boyfriend. It was time for the State Fair. People gathered in groups and stood in line for hours just to enter. Vendors were set up in a variety of places trying to sell their products. She and I were supposed to go together, but her boyfriend did not want her to attend, so she ended up staying at home. Her boyfriend, Brandon, was always the jealous type. He never wanted Brittany and me to spend time together; he wanted her all to himself. Brandon was over protective and controlling. Brittany had to tell him her every move, where she was going and who she was going with. At times, he even made her cry and embarrassed her in public by shouting and grabbing her forcefully. He gradually took my best friend away from me. She had to ask him for permission to spend time with me. Most of our plans were cancelled because he did not want her to see me. I always told Brittany that she could do better than him and he thought that I was putting negative thoughts in Brittany’s head, so he made her believe that I was trying to break them up. She left me without a sorry or a sign of regret.

It took me a while to realize it, but my best friend, for ten years, was changing right in front of my eyes. She was no longer the nice, sweet girl that I knew. She had turned into someone that betrayed her friends and thought only of herself. I realized that staying mad at her was not going to benefit me. So I forgave her for all the things she did to me, even if they did hurt me. Being able to forgive her has helped me develop peace in my life. I no longer have any hatred towards anyone because life is too short to hold grudges. If I didn’t forgive her, then she still had the power to make me mad. I will always reminisce on the good times that we shared, but there will always be a part of me that will remember the hurt that I experienced from our friendship.