What would it take? Write about a time when you were with someone that you are still angry with, and decide if they finally deserve to be forgiven.
Walking through the park, pushing the stroller, I see someone up in the distance and my stomach involuntarily knots. The quick heat of anger forms, familiar. Knowing that avoiding her was impossible, my mind starts racing with the old feelings of hurt, betrayal.
My head is up, looking forward. Not shrinking like I want to, not shrinking like I always did. She is casually sucking on a lollipop. We stop in front of each other. Because that's what you're supposed to do, right? When you walk directly in the path of someone who was your very best friend for years. When you walk directly in front of the person who once knew everything that there was to know about you. When you walk directly in front of the person who ruined any chance for you to truly trust and have healthy friendships with girls.
She bends down in front of the stroller, looking at my child. Looking through her. And I want to walk away but I don't. She stands up quickly, taking the lollipop out of her mouth in a way that seems perfect, practiced. She says, too loudly, "What a beautiful creature!" My muscles feel tight and I squeeze the handle of the stroller.
And I think to myself, "Don't you dare call my child a creature." And I want so badly for those words to form and come out of my mouth, but they don't.
"Thanks." I say. Looking her in the eye. I don't smile.
She knows I know. We both know that I know exactly what she did. This huge unspoken betrayal hangs thick in the air between us. She smiles and flips her long, straight hair out of her face. Like she always used to.
Uncharacteristically, she starts to fumble with her words. This person, who took great pains to never show a lack of confidence, this person who owned every room she stepped into, this person who never fumbled her words, starts rambling.
"Good to see you." I say, uncharacteristically interrupting. Locking eyes. My speckled green to her iced blue. I still don't smile. I won't, ever.
I push the stroller around her, looking forward. As I move further away, the heat of anger dissipates, and my baby starts babbling. The clouds fogging my brain begin to break and float away.
She doesn't deserve to be forgiven. But picking at old wounds keeps them from healing. I know though, that I will never forget.