A hurried email

dowis_phoenix-wikiI have to tell you this right now! I am not submitting my “forgiveness” article for publication. I am submitting this email to you to say thank YOU! Earlier this week, I read the call for submissions and thought, “Who am I to write an article? Nothing so horrific has happened to me. I have had all the slights in life, but nothing so big and bad.” I blew the call off.

Then driving to Grace Wednesday, my head nearly blew up. I was thunderstruck by forgiveness for myself. Me, I need to forgive me! Wow, what a blessing. This notion, dare I say, this truth has not left my thoughts. I don’t know how to forgive myself, but I do realize it is my thoughts, my imagined conversations with folks, that I have to change. Of course, I can spend the rest of my life being pissed at something from my past or I can be big, brave, bold, filled with love, adventure and forgive myself. It is in forgiving myself I believe I will find freedom, peace, awe and God.

There are times when I fancy myself a writer, but I am not. It stresses me to the max. But I can fire off an email to my friend and say thank you. I am not so bold as to put my pain, my name and my shame out for print, but one day, yes one day, this scared chicken of a girl is going to burst out the flames just like the Phoenix I so frequently see in my dreams.

— Kathee Dowis, Grace Church Cathedral, Charleston, S.C.