Patrick recently wrote a blog apologizing for appearing too negative in many of his writings.  I made the comment beneath that piece that he had nothing to apologize for.

“To err is human, to forgive…divine.” (although Patrick did not err so there is nothing to forgive).

Nevertheless, unless I am mistaken, we have all made mistakes in life at one time or another.

While having breakfast the other day with my police officer friend–the Commanding Officer of the Patrol Division of a local jurisdiction here in Maine, I confessed (although I had already regaled him with this story before) that about a year ago, I was pulled over for going through a red light. Not green. Not yellow. Solid red.

And I knew I was going through it. [Full disclosure: I was on my cell phone at the time, with my wife, and while I was completely aware of my surroundings, I recognized that at the speed I was going, I was going  to go through that solid red light. I instantly hung up the phone and I need to let you know that I also knew with certainty that no other car, coming from any direction, was at risk or was I].

I continued on my way–actually feeling bad; a.k.a, regret, remorse, etc.–and sure enough, about a ½ mile down the road, I was pulled over by a police officer.

And besides wishing the officer a genuine “good morning,” I immediately fessed up to what I had done. Mea culpa. And I promptly apologized. In other words, I was contrite. *

Which, especially in the times we are living, seems to be in very short supply; if not non-existent.

I need not list any particular individuals on our planet who show zero lack of remorse at all–the list would be quite long–and that’s assuming they are being called out for it (many indiscretions if not crimes never see the light of day) and some actually revel in not taking responsibility for their action(s).

Whether the truth shall set you free–or in jail–not taking responsibility or being contrite is simply in my opinion living a lie.  Shakespeare, in Hamlet, said “to thine own self be true.”

Truer words have never been spoken.

If you–yes you–think you did something wrong (and if you think you did something “wrong,” you probably did) whether it’s in the form of an apology to a spouse, a friend, or even a police officer, saying you are sorry can and often does go a long way. Just mean what you say and say what you mean. Be sincere. Anything else is a lie.

And if you think reading this short guest blog was a waste of your time…well…I apologize.

*After checking my license and registration, the Officer walked back to my car and with great courtesy–something also in very short supply these days, merely issued me a verbal “warning” under the correct assumption that my going through a red light wouldn’t happen again.

 

The author of this blog, Jay Levine, is a very dear friend of mine who lives in the great state of Maine with his lovely wife, Elizabeth Ernst.