I was seriously wronged recently.
I can’t go into the details here, but I would absolutely qualify what happened as bullying. I did something someone didn’t like, then that person held onto anger about that for months until the perfect opportunity presented itself to twist the truth in such a way that would make me look terrible and the other person look like a victim. As a result of what happened, I have been afraid of the repercussions for myself, my family and even in my professional life.
On Monday morning, I stood in my laundry room and cried while helplessness washed over me. If I took action, I put myself at risk of facing further harassment. The person had already proven to be vindictive. I didn’t know what to do.
Later that day, a friend at work provided the best advice I could’ve hoped for: What the other person really wanted was for me to engage, so by not engaging I would not only be protecting myself but also not giving in to what the bully wanted.
And I realized that doing nothing was no longer a position of weakness; it has taken a lot more strength to sit back, knowing the truth is on my side and that the truth always wins in the end.
My feelings are still raw, but I am beginning to let it go, to release the anger, the feelings of helplessness, the fear. I held those feelings in clenched hands, but my friend who offered such good advice began the process of helping me pry my fingers loose and now I have taken up the work myself. And as I begin to glimpse the lines of my palms, I realize that there’s not even anything in my hands. Nothing at all.
I’m looking forward to release. I’m looking forward to standing with my arms in the air, hands open, with knowledge that I have weathered the storm, behaved with honor and come out the other side a better person.
This post was written in response to one of Mama Kat’s weekly writing prompts: Choose a word and let it inspire a blog post. The word I chose was “Release,” inspired by my friend Courtney Kirkland’s post.
(A note on the image source: I searched for the original image but all I could come up with was a bunch of tumblr sites that had shared it without linking back to the original. If anyone knows who made this, I would love to credit them!)