So, did the title of this blog post draw you in? It sure would have had I read it. Confessions, are, shall we say, so confessional. They’re mysterious, eye-opening, sometimes salacious, cleansing, possibly damaging, revelatory, therapeutic and often offer a great deal of explanation as to why people or things were as they were. Even as I write, the words and tunes to Usher’s number one hit Confessions comes to mind. Before your eyes peruse any further let me say that I’m sorry to disappoint, but this blog post, thankfully pales in comparison to what Mr. Raymond released to the world. It’s simply my year end reflection on a few confessions I chose to make in 2014 and the freedom which came along with them.
So, where do I begin. This year, by happenstance, (which really wasn’t) I chose to focus on being a bit more transparent. I’m not all the way there yet, but the part I did conquer worked well for the path to growth I was pursuing. I apologized to an associate from high school for being mean, as we embarked on common goals together, which for me, caused me to be compelled to at least clear the air with a heart-felt apology. Thankfully, this person had forgotten the antics of the 17-year-old Angela. I said “I’m sorry” again to another dear friend I’ve known for almost 30 years, again for the antics of the teenage me. I told my story of my first semester in college at the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa to some current high school students, and lingered long on the lesson of how hard you have to work to bounce back and become successful after making a 1.8 GPA the first semester.
Perhaps most cleansing was sharing with a former close friend the truth behind my actions/reactions more than 15 years ago. This revelation was one that I grappled with from time-to-time, even as I’d not maintained a consistent association with this person, and carried along with it, for me a plethora of emotions that I needed to address, if for no other reason than to be able to share this post. I took the plunge to explain myself a few months ago, because my actions (or lack of) all those years ago lead to a perception of me that I felt I needed now to explain. Plus, it was just time to be open and free. With a slightly palpating heart, and the timidity of a nine-year-old reciting an Easter speech at a packed Baptist church in the south I shared my truth with this person of some possibilities which thankfully never manifested, but could have directly involved or indirectly affected this former good friend. Telling this otherwise unspoken of story through half sentences, and brief pauses was a task. Of course on the other end of the phone was delayed silence, timeline recollecting and mental processing, especially as I explained from my at the time, 20-something-year-old mindset of how I’d planned to proceed with the information I was privy to and why I felt silence with this person in this situation was the way to go. In the grand scheme of things I’m not certain that what I shared mattered to the hearer as so much time had passed, and we were both long past that era in life. I wasn’t looking for a response or resolution of sorts as all turned out well and as it should have, but I simply wanted to offer the respect enough to let this person know. So I did. I spilled the beans. It was received. I was relieved. We moved forward and continued to carry on with our individual lives.
In each of the times I shared something this year I had to check my pride at the door. Then I had to go back to the window and peek at the door to realize just how much pride I was carrying in the first place preventing me from being free. As I bring this year to a close, appreciative of the blessings and lessons, I want to continue to move on the path of freedom which comes with the pride-less beauty of personal ownership, honesty and accountability.