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  • Laura Alvarado-Newson

A milestone in my heart: to forgive the unforgivable as a mother.

THE POWER OF FORGIVENESS (A New beginning in 2015)

I thought I would re-

post, as this is a very important part to my healed heart and new normal.

"I came running when I heard the crash". Those words echo deeply in my heart, soul, mind and even body. No one saw when my son hit the ground. No one saw when his head slammed against the playground asphalt TWICE causing a brain bleed! No one saw his face of horror as he went down unable to cry for help or reach his arms out to break his fall. For a mother, this is enough to bring on rage and hate. It's hard enough to leave a nonverbal, completely helpless son at school. It is a step of faith, relying on others to care for and protect him when I am not around. Although I know that he is not completely helpless because God is with him.

Those words were the last thing I heard before my son was rushed to the hospital by the ambulance. The one person who had cared for him for years in this classroom, knew him, knew me, knew the family. We had laughed together, cried together, I would bring her flowers as a thank you for caring for my son; only to find out that on this day, she left him alone in a dangerous situation which resulted in one of the worst days of his life and our lives as a family.

It has been 4 years since the accident and I have been able to move past the sorrow and tears for the most part. I can talk about that day without losing it, most of the time. I can pass by the school without my heart breaking. However, I really wasn't prepared for this. It was New Years Eve and I needed to go to the store to buy ingredients for a meal I would be preparing for my beloved family and friends. The parking lot was full so my husband dropped me off in front of the store. As I was walking towards the entrance, I noticed a familiar face, I looked again and deeply wished I hadn't. It was her, the woman who failed to take care of my boy and denied her actions during a long legal battle for about 2 years. I wasn't prepared for this. I thought that as long as I never saw her again, I could keep the anger and hatred well under control, maybe even hidden; but there I was and there she was, it was like time stood still. I could feel my heart pounding. We were headed straight toward each other, eyes locked. As horrible as it may sound, I briefly imagined myself grabbing her, throwing her to the ground, screaming "HOW COULD YOU???" and beating her to a pulp. As we met face to face, we stopped and stared, both with tears in our eyes, and embraced. I said Hi, she said Hi. She asked me how he was doing. I gave her a brief update and hugged her again, telling her the past is in the past. She never admitted fault which made it difficult for me to say the words "I forgive you". However, for my own healing, the first embrace, was forgiveness and the second one was "I really do forgive you".

I CAN'T FORGIVE BY MYSELF

I know I don't have the courage or strength to forgive someone who hurts my children. This is why I know and am relieved that Jesus lives in me and in that moment, through me, He embraced this woman, freeing her from the guilt she was carrying and freeing me from the hatred I was carrying for so long. This was a new day, a new chance to make things right and walk in freedom!

I have walked in this freedom since. Forgiving is probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to do, but it is one of the most liberating things I have ever done. When I forgave, I freed myself from anger and bitterness which led to peace and joy. The only reason I can forgive is because God has forgiven me. I have had to forgive alot of people in my life, and will have to forgive more people in my life including those doctors and nurses who love "predicting" how miserable my son's life will be, or those therapists who have used the word "never" in their evaluations a little too much. These things have caused a lot of anger and pain in my heart as a mother, but I have learned that if I want to live in peace, have joy in my home and create an atmosphere of peace for those around me, I have to forgive, there is no other way around it. If there is any judgement to be made, I will let God do that, since He is the one true judge and he has my back.

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