Forgiveness is giving up all hope of a better past.
-Lily Tomlin (?)

A hallmark of being locked within addictive patterns is regret. Addictive patterns demand that we prioritize them. At various levels, our ability to navigate our decision making process autonomously is marred by these rigid demands, inevitably leading to behaviors and actions that create deep reservoirs of regret. Upon entering recovery, we will often have to contend with the emotional reverberations that this regret causes in our lives. No longer sheltered by the numbing that our addictions created, we may experience great discomfort in the form of lowered self-esteem and poor self-confidence. For this, we must learn to forgive ourselves. Without using the power of addiction to outright justify our past, we can use it to create a story that softens the reaction we have to ourselves and our old addicted lives. We can’t change the past thus we must release the desire for it to be different. But in giving up the impossible dream of changing our past, we can release ourselves and focus instead on the infinite possibilities of the present and the brighter future that we can create.

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