l"Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step."  Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
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My Act Of Contrition
Written by Sonny Carroll
© 2002, Sonny Carroll. Reprinted With Permission

As it happened it was a Saturday morning, a housecleaning day. I went into the bathroom to get a can of Ajax that I kept beneath the bathroom sink. Absently, I bent down to reach for it and as I stood to walk away, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror.

For a second, I was taken aback. The way you are when
you run across an old acquaintance and for a moment, you try to place the face.

“You” I heard myself say, “It’s you. I hadn’t noticed you standing there all this time.”

I took a step back and turned to face the mirror. I looked at myself. My age was beginning to show. I looked carefully at the contours of my face, my nose, the tiny beauty mark on the side of my mouth. No judgments… just recognition. Then I looked deep into my eyes, my beautiful brown eyes.

I felt myself gazing the way you do when upon first meeting, you seem to recognize the soul of another. “Hello.” I heard myself whisper. “Oh my God, I’ve never noticed you standing there. Standing and waiting for me to recognize you. All this time it’s been you there beside me.”

You said nothing, but in your eyes, I saw it all.

You had walked every step of the way with me. You picked me up when I fell. When others walked away, you stayed. And every time I thought I couldn’t go on you gave me the strength and you showed me the way. I never acknowledged you. I never championed you. I never took care of you. I never acknowledged your goodness, your, gifts or your strength. I had love for everyone else but none for you. “Forgive me.” I heard myself cry. “I never meant to hurt you. You… the one that has always been there for me. Let me love and honor you. I promise never to betray you again.”

You said nothing, but in your eyes, I saw a smile.
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Please note that this essay is part
of a three part trilogy which can be found on
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Copyright © 2002 Sonny Carroll.
 All Rights Reserved.



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