I sat on my bedroom floor, curled up in a corner. Everything falling apart. Tears flooded my face. I was a bad person. I didn’t deserve to be on this Earth anymore. My knuckles turned white around the knife. I would be doing the world a favor if I left. I caused more harm than good by being here. No one would miss me. Everyone would be better off without me.
Throwing my head back into the wall, my chest rose and fell with hard sobs. My body trembled. I looked down at the knife in my hand. It wouldn’t go anywhere. But I needed to go. What purpose did I have on this planet? After all the bad things I’ve done…how could anyone forgive me? Everyone simply acted like they loved me. Nobody needed me. Nobody wanted me.
I didn’t even want myself. I hated me. And if I hated me, certainly everyone else did. I was so pathetic, I couldn’t even make myself bleed. There was no controlling the snot mingling with tears on my face. I was a mess. Had always been a mess. I screwed up everything. Never made anyone happy. Never let myself be happy. All I did was ruin everything. I needed to go.
But I never could go. I watched the knife shake in my hand for an hour. It never went anywhere. It stayed in my sweaty grasp. My depressed sobbing had turned into cries of anger. Why couldn’t I die? Why did I need to live? What purpose did I have other than torturing myself? Could I wish myself away? Could I will myself to death? The knife wasn’t doing me any good. My body went limp from exhaustion. What was I even doing here?
Then I heard something other than the voices in my head. I heard soft crying. I blinked back pooled tears. On the other side of my room was a little girl. Her knees up to her chin, head in her arms. She looked familiar to me. Behind her played blurry, one-sided and biased events. My wall had become a projection screen for her past. Though her past wasn’t quite clear. Sniffing, I rose.
“Don’t you see?” she screamed. “Don’t you see how bad of a person I am?” The events slowly became clearer. “Dont’ you see what I’ve done? I’m a bad person. Nobody loves me. How can anybody love me?”
I swallowed. Beginning to understand. Those events…I remembered them as clear as day. Her past was mine. Everything I had done. Everything that caused me so much anxiety. Everything I couldn’t forgive myself for. All the reasons why I hated myself. My eyes darted over the various incidents. Brimming with tears again until they overflowed. “Can’t you see how bad I am?” she pressed. “I’m a terrible person.”
Dropping down next to her, I held her in my arms. Buried my head in hers. My heart ached for this little girl who carried so much weight. “No…” I barely managed talking through my crying. Squeezed her tighter. “All of those things…just because you did something wrong doesn’t make you a bad person.” I choked. “You’re not evil. You are loved. I love you. And even if nobody else does, I-I…forgive you. I forgive you for the things you’ve done.”
Her head lifted, glistening eyes meeting mine. “Then you have forgiven yourself.” I blinked. “What?” But I studied her. That was why she looked familiar. She was me. The part of my soul I kept buried in guilt and shame. I couldn’t stop crying. It was all sinking in. She smiled. “I am you, and you have forgiven me. You have finally forgiven yourself. You no longer need to carry the hatred for yourself.”
She radiated warmth while I sat in stunned silence. Tears stopped raining down. My heart no longer hurt, and my soul felt lighter. What happened? I looked at the knife on the floor. No longer wishing to take my own life. I blinked again. It had been years of not letting go. And…it was this hard but also this easy all along? She suddenly burst into thousands of glowing particles and absorbed into me. “I forgive you,” she whispered, “I love you. You have forgiven yourself. You have set yourself free.” I whispered back, “I am free.”