I’ve decided that during this upcoming 40-day period, I need to focus on letting go of any and all regrets I may have from my college era.

I have plenty. I regret stunting what could’ve been wonderful friendships, because of trust issues I’d developed after my first petty experience with homophobes. I regret allowing myself to become bitter and resentful towards strangers who meant me no ill will, who I closed my heart off against because I was afraid of getting hurt once more.

And more than anything else, I regret the deep-seated grudges I held against the homophobes who went out of their way to mock, taunt and demean me, when all I wanted was to pursue my major in peace. Allowing myself to hate them poisoned me, and wasn’t justified by anything they did to me.

While I let go of those grudges a while back, I’ve been mentally regurgitating those bad memories, and thusly tainting my overall college experience. Probably my biggest some during Lent is to make myself permanently forgive each and every person who hated me, no matter what they did or said.

My college years were defined by God’s supreme love and loyalty towards me, especially when I felt utterly alone. I won’t let that era be tainted by the negative people I encountered. No matter how much any of them despised me for whatever ridiculous reasons they had, nobody could hope to prevent God helping me graduate and leave, cum laude no less.

I want to gratefully look back on all the times God helped me escape and overcome my enemies. Most of all, I cherish the moment when He effortlessly took me out of the homophobic dormitory I had chosen, and returned me to my previous dormitory, room and roommate from the previous year, all with a matter of barely 3 days. Despite me feeling that I couldn’t escape my toxic environment as easily as I wished, God rewarded my trust in Him by returning me to the dorm that had been my loving home for freshman year.

That love is what deserves to be remembered, not the pathetic homophobes who I had the misfortune of dealing with. Tomorrow especially, which happens to be both Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day combined, I intend to prayerfully dwell on the Love that conquered all the pain that came my way in college. With God’s help, I’ll let go of the negative experiences that I faced in college, so that I can fully appreciate the wonderful future He has in store for me.