Forgiveness and Painting

Forgiveness is a funny thing. It forces you to reflect. Sitting around staring at the walls, in contemplation on life, I realized no one else was going to do it for me. I needed to make some choices. I needed to paint.

In reflection I would describe my encounters with apologies and forgiveness as perplexing. People are not very forgiving are they?

“Pobodie’s nerfect” Err, as we all know, nobody , not even ourselves, is perfect. Personally I really work to not throw any stones because I know this to be true in myself. But sometimes it can feel like the whole world wants you to feel bad. I make mistakes all the time, but how to get past feeling guilty about every little mistake you ever make? Hmm ..right now I pick painting .

There is so much more to saying -I’m sorry -than the words. But the words are important, and , from my experience, it is best to say them right away . Whether you know you’re in the wrong, or even if you know you’re in the right ..even if that’s a bit Canadian. Even if you know it won’t make much difference. Just say it.

And so I now offer my most heartfelt apology- to all of you. To those of you whom I have wronged, in any way whatsoever. Just in case you happen to be reading this. I am sorry I hurt you. I am sorry I let you down. I am sorry I did not live up to your expectations, and I am sorry offended or I disappointed you. I offer this apology to everyone I know and even to people I have yet to meet. For those of you who I have personally offered apologies, and there are many, you know who you are. I am Sorry.

Stay neutral, stay cool, everything is relative, nothing is black or white…

I am sorry. Please forgive me. I love you. Thank you. These few powerful small phrases, That I happened upon via social media, are part of a kind of Hawaiian spiritual healing tradition. ( ho’oponopono )Pretty much says it all for me. I want to build them into my every interaction!

On the other side of the equation to those of you who may have wronged me? I wholeheartedly forgive you! Yes, you are off the hook. The funny thing about this I’ve personally realized, is that it doesn’t usually change how we feel about what was done. Or how we feel we were treated. So what is it for, why is it important? It is an offering. A get out of jail free pass invitation to move on and move forward, with your life, interactions and inside your heart and mind relationship with yourself.

To all the rest of you, I invite you to remember the good things too! Why the brain seems to route to those difficult moments? I will never know. Meditation and breathing does help . I have honestly found, saying out loud to yourself, “Enough! STOP. And how about just being happy with yourself for a change?” can help. But to give credit, to our highest self, when I do drop down in my heart, I do remember the love. All the great memories we’ve made. All the positives. I remember this and I spend time there, It’s important. It makes me glad, and happy and thank you each and everyone one of you! For while I address the wrongs, and battle with my anxieties, ego and false self, it is good and soothing to remember in my heart of all the rights, the truth and love that I’ve experienced in this life too.

And so, we accept that not everyone we have ever cared for will always be a part of our lives, and it’s okay. It’s nothing personal against anyone, it is simply making the choice to accept reality and be at peace as much as possible, even if it means being alone. I do hope that it is not all alone, I mean people need people, but I’ve come to a point in my life where if it is, then I am ok with that. If you are looking for me, well I’ll probably be painting.

If you’re wondering what I’ve been up to lately…

Guilt and forgiveness are close relatives. Maybe even siblings. But more likely mother and daughter… It’s one thing to say, “I am sorry” whether you mean it or not, and it’s another thing to take steps to make amends. Sometimes neither are even possible, adding incredible frustration and sadness to the guilt. But at least if you said , “I’m sorry” you can always go back and hold onto this.

I’m sorry. Please Forgive me. I love you. Thank you.http://

Additionally; for most of we all have to live with our consciences. And no matter what you do, or when in your life. It never goes away. Ideally we make the best choices every moment of our lives. More realistically as humans we make mistakes and learn from them . When you say sorry , it also gives the other person something to hold onto . We all have to live with the consequences of our actions .

I know I have learned from my mistakes, but then I continue to make them!? I have apologized. Sometimes I’ve been able to make amends and sometimes not. When we can’t make things right it really sucks. When I think about this topic I feel all bogged down, in everything I’ve ever done wrong in my life . Some things I can never take back. Through introspection I’ve come to realize I will continue to make mistakes. It’s a human thing. This is when I go get my paint brush.

Conscience is probably the best deterrent towards avoiding being in position of seeking forgiveness. It’s a powerful force to be reckoned with indeed .

Side story: My earliest recollection of conscience, I was around 5 or 6. There was a coffee can in our kindergarten classroom. It was brimming with buttons, and 2 little sea shells. We did not live near the ocean , so I was attracted to these shells. I wanted one of these shells. I remember contemplating it, over more than one day . I knew it was wrong to steal, but would it matter to anybody if I took one shell? There was still another one after all . So one day, I pocketed it.

On my way walking home, I was filled with loathing and regret. That somehow I had changed and there was no way back . I couldn’t very well go back and give the silly shell to the teacher? What would she think of me ? She would think I was a bad person!

I kept the shell. I felt I had to own it as a reminder to never steal again. I recall it sat in my desk drawer in my room at home. …Perhaps I put it back in the end, but that horrible feeling of self loathing was memorable, that was the real keeper.

The moral of the story is that the shell became a symbol for me of the awful feelings of a guilty conscience.

Other times I have gone out on a limb and apologized tend to fall in these categories . For not telling the truth, telling the truth or confessing a wrongdoing, lashing out at someone or something out of frustration . It’s never easy, but it is simple. The complexity comes in what you might expect to happen. From my experience it simply lightens the load. And that’s a lot.

Whether you’re truly forgiven or not is complex because , depending on the infraction. That person may have to sit with your apology for years, or even forever. So I’ve come to realize that I am horrible, and terrible and I make mistakes, and I am not okay with it. But at some point we have to get on with our lives right??

In the meantime I’ve discovered a wonderful way of experiencing some forgiveness in your life . It is called matte paint . Also known as flat. Beautiful flat paint looks so great on your wall. Regardless of imperfections, flat paint forgives and bestows your walls and trim with grace and beauty.

So next time you’re feeling bad, try Flat paint . Paint your trim, paint your doors, paint your walls , and it will all turn out great!

So forgiving and paintable , if it gets marked up, as long as it’s a decent quality, it will still wash off . And then oh my dear if you need to, you can brush on a little more… and ahhh so much better!

Flat paint will forgive you , try flat paint today !

Or if you Feel you’ve been walking on eggshells? Well, eggshell is nearly as good at matte. Happy painting and I hope you feel better soon . I know I do 😉

Published by

Holly Kirkpatrick Ulrich

Studio Artist, Art Jewellery, Visual Arts

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