There are some things that are impossible to forgive or justify. I’m not talking about that big stuff here, but rather the things that are big in our own lives. Intentional hurts. Insults. Bad behavior. Things that reasonably can be forgiven.
Probably (if experience is any guide) not ever entirely forgotten.
There’s a reason that old saying combines “forgive” and “forget” in one expression. It seems to me that you can’t have forgiveness, true forgiveness, unless you have been able to forget (as much as possible) the hurt delivered to you in the first place. Forgiveness is far easier once some memory loss has taken place.
The more the better. Which is why an aging mind is such an asset. It forgets very easily.
Time is another ally in moving from hurt and rage to forgiving and forgetting. Days pass and life crowds out your anger and disappointment. You get busy and involved with your own affairs… unless you remind yourself regularly of what happened, the awful feelings, the urges to make them hurt as badly as you do, will be pushed aside, their place taken by other things. Useful things.
More important things.
Then, before you know it some measure of time has passed. More time than you realized. You can talk rationally about the hurt now. Maybe even joke about it. You see it for the awful, painful moment it was, but as only one moment in a story that’s still being written. Hanging on to the hurt keeps you in that same place forever.
I hate that horrible place. Too many people get stuck there, linger and some have the misfortune to die there. Holding back forgiveness, being angry and full of justifications for why you hold on. Never moving forward. Allowing a single (or multiple) hurtful moments to have power over you and what you think about or wish for.
The hurt was bad enough, stop giving it more power than it deserves. Let some time pass. Get busy with your own life and before you know it forgiveness become easier. You might even forget how many times you have forgiven.
Bonus points for that.