When I was younger, I found it hard to say “I’m sorry” and “Thank you.” It was not inculcated in my system to voice out what I really meant to say. I was better off writing my thoughts than sharing it or expressing it.
In 1994, I had a rift with a boardmate and I felt bad about it after realizing that it was my fault. Being young and unexpressive, we had a long-standing rift for nearly two decades. Had it happened today when it’s easier to reach out to somebody through text messaging or Facebook, I could have said sorry to him and we could both move on and bury the hatchet. But it was 1994 and months later, we were no longer staying in the same boarding house so there was no chance for apologies.
I could have written him a letter of apology and send it to his school address but I was too proud to stoop to that level of humility. As I grew older (and wiser), I realize that it’s never okay to hurt someone’s feelings and pretend as if nothing happened; somebody has to take accountability and ask for forgiveness.
Last year, before I gave birth to Robi, I searched him through Facebook and sent him a short message. I just wanted to check if he could still remember me after 17 years. I forgot about that message and I was surprised to receive his reply a year later.
We talked about our family and work. I was careful about bringing up the topic of what I did nearly two decades ago. I was afraid to spoil the fun of finding an old friend. After some days of communicating, he mentioned about what I did to him and how it affected his life then. I told him that I was really sorry for the things that I did and I never did for him. It was a sincere apology and he accepted it. I felt good about accepting my mistake and being forgiven by the person that I offended 18 years ago.
It’s never too late to say sorry about an incident that caused someone else’s pain and agony.
It’s never too late to express your gratitude for the people that helped you become who you are right now.
It’s never too late to say you love the people that matters most to you.