When Billie Goat Soap was featured on A Current Affair, people asked me how much we paid Channel 9 to do the story. I was shocked by the question because we never paid for any editorial, especially A Current Affair. It was an elderly lady who brought us to the attention of Channel 9…One connection to one bar of soap, made by one person in our factory lead to a whole world of connections with people who cared about our journey as much as we did. The lady in question had used Billie Goat to clear up her skin (on a recommendation from her bank teller!). She was so impressed she called our office to tell us about it. We were so moved by her story that I shared it with John. He was so thrilled, he sent an email to ACA via their website and less than 20 minutes later they called him to organise to do a story. That was the start of a connection that resulted in three stories being aired over four years, and a lot of beautiful souls sharing in the Billie Goat journey.
I love telling this story (over a cuppa you get the extended version!) because it reminds me that the joyous moments were never about the soap – they were about the people. I don’t really remember the thousand of bars produced when times were busy, I remember the people sharing the load, people working around the clock, families eating take away Thai as we packed orders at 10pm at night just to get them out the door, and strangers contacting us to tell us how much our efforts had helped them or their loved ones. I remember the smiles, the laughs, the tears, the debates, the celebrations and the love. None of this is found in a bar of soap (errrhh, perhaps a touch of love!) – it’s found in people.
This makes self-forgiveness so important because those connections with others will be there forever. I’ve seen lots of facebook quotes lately about cutting people out of your life if they are negative energy. I think that’s impossible. If you have already encountered them in your life, they are now in the very fabric of it. You are now connected. In addition, if forgiveness is linked to unconditional love for self and others, how can it be okay to ignore the ones who we simply don’t like? I’ve talk about this before here. I think the answer lies in establishing boundaries with those people. Boundaries enable us to love and still recognise there are things we don’t like.
Recognising that self-forgiveness involves connections with people, rather than something that happenned in the past, helps me to get closer to my mental roadblocks – to really clarify what I am feeling. Ultimately, when it comes to self-forgiveness, it’s about how I have affected my connection with others, or even my own identity (sense of self), via my words or actions. This is the juicy part worth exploring when I am brave enough!
Yes, I accept that we really only ever have one point in time, but it helps to know what lead me to this point so that I may enjoy it when I’m there.