I’m Sorry, I Promise!

Probably two of the most meaningless and misused words in the English language are “sorry” and “promise.” We want desperately to believe them when we hear them. We accept the apology and forgive. We accept the promise with renewed hope. Yet 99% of the time, they fall flat.
We know that if someone is truly sorry, then they will make every effort so that the same mistake doesn’t happen again. But then it does. And again, and again. We understand a promise to be a sacred vow between the hearts, souls, and spirits of 2 or more individuals, only to find out “promise” is just a word. A pretty word, yes, but just a word.
But words are powerful! And hope is a strong, courageous feeling. We want to believe and trust words like “sorry” and “promise.” In spite of the odds, in spite of the past broken promises and repetitious sorrys, in spite of the resulting feelings of betrayal and anger and bitterness and naivete that we experience when we believe just one more time… still… we believe.
I can’t anymore.
Not. One. More. Time.
So, friends, family, acquaintances, students, all of the people that I know and love, please save your “sorry” and your “promise” for someone else- I don’t need “sorry” or “promise” for anything, ever, anymore.

Gratefully inspired by the poem, “Sorry” by Ntozake Shange, poet

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