Every human on earth has done something at some point in their life that they are not proud of. We've called each other hurtful names, we've lashed out in anger, we've hurt others (physically and emotionally), we've abandoned people in time of need, we've cheated, we've lied, we've stolen. No one is perfect.
Even little white lies count against a claim of "perfection." Put a human in front of me that hasn't told a "little white lie" at some point in their life. Try it. I bet you can't. Even children know how to lie. Studies have been done with children as young as age 2 (age when most children can talk) that have proven they know how to lie.
Now that you understand everyone has done something in their life that they are not proud of, it's time to do this: Forgive yourself.
There are many people in the world that punish themselves on a daily basis. Most don't punish themselves for the little white lies, but usually for the bigger things, like physically or emotionally hurting someone. This fact truly hit home with me when watching a documentary on Netflix called Girls Incarcerated.
The show opened my eyes up to a world of punishment at Madison Juvenile Correctional Facility in Indiana (not far from my home city and state). I don't mean punishment of the children by just being there (though that's what it is meant for). I mean a world where I saw humans punishing themselves. One in particular is Taryn Twine.
Taryn was a the driver of a car that crashed in 2016. Four passengers were injured and one was killed. The one killed, Ahjahnae Jones, was Taryn's friend. The show and any news stories did not indicate any drugs or alcohol caused Taryn to crash the vehicle. I've been in accidents before that did not involve drugs or alcohol, but speed was always a determining factor. This was probably the case with this accident as well.
After the accident, Taryn felt a huge amount of responsibility. So much, in fact, that she chose to admit herself to the Juvenile Facility because she decided she needed to be punished for the event. I started crying as she told her heartbreaking story. She could not forgive herself for the death of her friend and she was only 16 years old. Even her mother was interviewed and said Taryn just couldn't shake the guilt. She said she had been so happy before the accident (Taryn was a cheerleader and loved gymnastics) but nothing could bring back her happiness.
I've researched Taryn and it appears she is out of the facility now. I only hope that she can now understand that this was a life event that she should no longer punish herself for. I believe she could use it to push her into the direction of her life purpose. Despite her horrible life event, I watched her coach other girls and steer them in better directions while at Madison. Maybe she can use what she learned to teach others, coach others to live better lives, make better choices, and understand that life isn't over after you make a mistake.
Each girl profiled had a story that truly touched my heart. They all made me really think about how we must forgive ourselves. No matter what you said or did, you have to forgive yourself to be able to move forward with your life.
How do you forgive yourself?
I can't tell you EXACTLY how to do this as I believe it is up to each human to find what works for them, but I have one idea to help: Spend time alone with yourself and your thoughts. Time is very healing. Forgiveness will come to you in time. When you feel ready to move on, use the fuel of forgiveness to leap forward and lead your best life.
I'll also tell you this--You are forgiven. God, your Spirit Guides and your Angels (and whoever/whatever you believe in) have forgiven you. They see you, know you, love you and want you to know you are safe, protected and are forgiven.
2019 Update: I’ve been in contact with Taryn and I would like to announce she has moved away from Indiana, which I believe was a great decision. At the time of me writing this update, she is doing well, starting a career and seems to be moving towards become an awesome adult. She was pleased with what I wrote and I encouraged her to keep moving forward. That’s what anyone that has dealt with a tragic situation must do. Always keep moving forward. I even wrote a quick little piece that may help encourage you in moving forward if you need it. Click this link to jump to the article: Always Keep Moving Forward.