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Making Peace With An Old Enemy Might Be Just What You Need

I assure you that I will use the term “enemy” judiciously. You see, I’m no war veteran and I’ve always been raised in the Christian faith which teaches us to love your enemies. The word “enemy” has had different meanings for me at different phases of my life. When I was in school, math and science were my enemies, then in college, it was economics. Things began to graduate, and then, slowly people replaced those things that I once considered to be my enemies.

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Well, I can’t say that I didn’t hate these people but that was just momentarily. One such enemy was a close best friend. Someone I loved and adored, from the time I learnt what a best friend meant. Now, the same person fell in my category of enemies or people I must avoid at all times.

friends fighting_New_Love_Times

Image source: liesyoungwomenbelieve

Now, looking back, it’s really funny how everything unfolded and how instantly we turned from being best pals to bitter enemies. The thought of her would boil my blood and make my heart burn. If you really need to know what happened between us, I’d say, me, my best friend, and my boyfriend. Yes, you got it. You see, betraying someone is not a very nice thing to do, and it’s hard to forgive such people. So, in the end, I was left with two enemies for a very long time – an  ex-boyfriend and an old best friend.

Over the years, I thought I made peace with the fact that these two people didn’t deserve the importance I once gave them. So, for a brief period, they were literally blocked from my life.

No communication, no confrontation, and no care.

That’s how we lived and put it all behind us. At least, that’s what I did. I was told by other good friends that it’s best I didn’t deal with them because they simply didn’t deserve the dignity that I had to offer a human being; I stuck to their advice. All went well, years passed by, and each of us moved on with our respective lives.

woman thinking_New_Love_Times

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With every passing year, I grew older and made new friends and cherished the ones who stuck by me all those years. I was fine; yes, I really was. Besides, I hadn’t had the time to dwell on these two people. There were far more important things that needed my attention and energy.

So soon, they turned into a layer of dust that had piled and settled on a piece of unused furniture. It was there, and it didn’t bother me. Occasionally, when I was reminded of them in any way, I would quickly chase that ugly thought away and warn my heart not to bring that up again, because, it only caused pain. And I didn’t need that.

Each time I was reminded of them, it messed my head, and feelings of anger developed into hatred, making me feel miserable. I wondered if they felt any remorse for what they had done? If they ever had any feelings at all? Did they think of me too and how ill were those feelings they had for me?

It’s not easy to change feelings of love and care for someone; it takes time, but they did give me a good reason to dislike them and they made it easy for me to hate them.

Sometimes I would wake up in the morning after a dream about them. A few happy memories would cross my mind. My heart would then play devil’s advocate and I had to dismiss any feelings I had and treat them like my enemies. After all, I trained myself to hate them for the longest time. On some other occasions, they would come up in topics of discussions with other friends and I had to repeat my training all over again.

woman thinking_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

One fine day, I decided that I would take the initiative and make peace.

How difficult could that be?

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I reached out to the ex-boyfriend first, because men are easy! Left him a message and told him I had forgiven him for everything that had happened and I didn’t want to have those negative feelings towards him. What happened a long time ago was probably his immaturity and my over-reaction and, there was no point holding a grudge now since we had moved on and I didn’t want to die without making peace with somebody I detested. He took it well and was elated to hear from me. Soon, we were chatting and thereafter maintained a cordial and healthy friendship.

I was relieved that one bit was over. It felt like someone had lifted that log off of my chest that had been placed for years over me, making me immobile and suffocated. The feelings that followed after that little effort changed the way I began looking at things in general. All was forgotten and forgiven. I felt like the superior being, and hopefully, this little deed scored me a few brownie points with Karma.

A few months later and post some hesitation, I decided I would do the same with the old friend. If I could forgive the boyfriend, I sure as hell could forgive her and get some closure.

woman working on her laptop_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

I put down my thoughts in an email, my intention was not to become friends again, because she had lost that place in my heart forever. Nothing could bring back my old feelings, but I had to remove something off my chest and I wanted her to know that I had no ill feelings for her anymore either. I only wanted to make peace with myself. So I wasn’t doing this to feed her narcissism but to make myself feel better.

I was healing and I wanted her to know that.

I wanted to show her that peace can be attained after a conflict. And once that was attained, no one had the power to break that tranquility of my soul. Every wound that she had caused on my soul had healed itself with time and with the other people who genuinely loved me and helped me get out of the mess she had created. They picked me up delicately and taught me that life was beyond petty people like her. I wanted her to know that it wasn’t very easy for me to forgive her, but that it seemed like the right thing to do.

I wrote down a few memories that I shared with her to remind her of those good times we had and thanked her for being a part of my life during those times. As I typed further, I felt like I was floating in air; perhaps that’s what people feel in space with no gravity. Nothing was pulling me down now, and I wanted to rise above everything, above her and her pettiness especially. I succeeded and I know I did good.

woman at peace with herself_New_Love_Times

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As I ended the email, I couldn’t shake off this bittersweet feeling. I closed my eyes, trying to picture those times we shared. I wanted to cry, but I just couldn’t. Something told me that she didn’t deserve those tears and that respect, so I let it be. The most important thing over here was to get rid of that aftertaste her memory brought to my palate. I found an old snap of us and sent it to her; that was the only memory I had of her and I wanted her to have it too.

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When I hit the send button on the email, I knew some things had changed. I had become a better person, I had learnt to forgive and be compassionate. But most importantly, I was healing. I had gotten better with every word that I had typed in that e-mail. I had recovered that space in my heart that she had blocked for years now, and again, that spot had some love in it. A little extra love that I could spare for all the other people that existed in my life.

I felt liberated, as though I was riding a bike on high speed on an empty, endless road. The wind in my face calmed my spirit and I wasn’t afraid anymore. I had emerged a stronger person, and this person was unstoppable. I knew that by the time she read my email, I had set free the spirit that was caged inside of me, those thoughts flowing out like soap bubbles and filling the air around me. It felt like spring, all flowery and blooming. I wanted to pause that feeling and hold it there forever. Alas, I wish that were possible.

I am now a person who has made peace with her past and will not shy away from repeating this in the future. It’s closure that everyone needs, and I got mine after a lot of reluctance and hesitation. I urge you to try this if you can, make peace with an old enemy, and see what it feels like. That sweet taste of liberation is addictive, I tell you.

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Article Name
Why It's Necessary To Make Peace With An Old Enemy
It's not always easy to make peace with an old enemy, but it's definitely worth a try. If you succeed, you'll feel a huge burden lifted off for sure.
Steffi D'Souza

Steffi D'Souza

I am a converted dog lover, lipstick addict, and travel enthusiast. I have a distinct love for old architecture and the ocean. I like reading books but love writing more. After experimenting with a gamut of roles in various leading corporations, I have finally discovered my passion. Thus, I have given up my corporate job to pursue a full time career in writing. I hope to write books and I'm already working on my first novel. I blog about all happy things on