Fighting Past Wrongs
Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors
Fighting Past WrongsA young man blocked by hatred.
Dr. Wayne W. Dyer offers an engaging tale about the power of forgiveness in the fiction story of Ryan Kilgore. Driven since childhood by an angry need to settle old scores, Ryan makes a surprise appearance at a family funeral…
Up front, behind a display of flickering candles, a minister was speaking in solemn tones about redemption, maternal fidelity, and piousness, giving the strong impression that he was talking about a generic old woman whom he’d never met.
Ryan picked up a program from a flushed female usher with a brunette flip, a white ruffled blouse, and hoop earrings, who gave him the once-over, as if she might know who he was. At Peace! the program read, with a motif of lilies and a smudged photo of a woman whose face nearly knocked him to his knees.
Anne Mary Kilgore. It was a head shot, probably a church photo. Her pale face, lined with wrinkles, looked out at the camera with a sour expression. This is who I am, the photo seemed to say. Take it or leave it. Ryan sat down abruptly in a back row.
So here she was again, his father’s mother, whom he hadn’t seen in the flesh for over 40 years. She had been at a picnic his mother had taken him to once shortly after his father had abandoned them, as if to provide him with some sort of family. He remembered Anne Mary as bitter and lean, hardly the kind of grandmother he had hoped for. Hugging her had been like wrapping his arms around baling wire.
What was there to say about Anne Mary Kilgore’s life? Not much, according to this church bulletin, except her date of birth and marriage and a list of her children—the second being Ryan’s vanished, ne’er-do-well father.
Gram Anne was on display at the front of the room, her battered face visible even from the back, resting in an elaborate coffin befitting royalty. Ryan stood and shuffled in a line down the aisle, taking it all in. The room was filled with displays of flowers rarely seen in nature, let alone in such combinations: fiery gladiolas, clove-scented carnations, and waxen lilies with a cloying sweetness. Ryan’s stomach roiled with that morning’s coffee and greasy food.
The casket itself looked as if it were the most deluxe of all models—lined in satin and constructed of some titanium-like material, a spaceship designed to propel Gram Anne to another world.
Who had paid for all this and why, for a woman who surely never encountered real satin in all her life? If Ryan remembered correctly, his grandmother wore housedresses and aprons and scuffed shoes.
Why hadn’t someone bought her a fur coat or flowers while she had been living, when she could have enjoyed it? What was the point of swaddling her in satin now—for eternity or whatever came next?
He stopped himself. This is what his wife Sophie said he always did whenever he approached deep feeling—distracted himself with irony and intellectual arguments.
“You act like everyone’s straight out of your anthropology books—like they don’t have anything to do with you.”