This post is edited from the original. I have edited out the personal e-mails between my sons and myself out of respect for their privacy.
So, over the past few days of working through my feelings over the things my sons included in their lists of "25 things" God has shown me some wonderful truths. One of these truths is that I have wonderful sons! I hesitated to share all of this, in detail, here in my blog. My sons don't know that I blog and I'm not completely sure how they would like the details of our struggles being shared...but this, the outcome of this particular struggle brings honor to them and is worth sharing. So I am going to share it.
Here's what happened...
After my realization that my struggle with truly accepting God's forgiveness and mercy was really at the root of my hurt feelings, a friend said something to me that opened my eyes to another aspect of it all that I hadn't even thought about. She shared with me that her guilt and regret over her past mistakes had put a strain on her relationship with her son. She shared this with me on a message board and when I read those words I knew, without a doubt, that God was speaking directly to my heart through this wonderful woman!
As I pondered what she had said, I allowed myself to think about what it must be like for my sons to have to live with not only the scars from a rocky childhood, but with a mom who wears her heart on her sleeve over it. I thought about how unfair it is for me to expect them to watch their every word because I might get my feelings hurt. I realized that I, by my holding on to the guilt and shame, was holding their childhood over their heads and somehow, without intending it, was expecting them to some how make it all ok for me. What an unfair burden for a mom to place on the shoulders of her sons!
My original post included copies of my apology to both of them and their responses...all via e-mail as we are a tech generation family! I have taken those out as I said, out of respect for them. So I will just say that their response to my apology was loving, accepting, tender and reassuring. They are wonderful, forgiving men and I am proud to be their mom.