I'm not always sure how to make amends. Often, too much time has passed, or the conversation has moved on. Sometimes explaining what made me uncomfortable--what led me to try to fill the awkwardness with humor--only makes the situation more awkward. How hard it is to redeem myself in my own eyes! I know I'm only human, but I want so hard to be a good person, to be a kind person. I want to make peoples' lives easier, not harder and more painful.
Sometimes I find, the only answer is prayer. Meditation on my faults--if I am not afraid to admit them--is an important exercise in humility. And by humility I don't mean groveling on the ground and bemoaning my wickedness. Humility is not humiliation. "Humility" derives from the Latin word, "humus" or ground, earth as in dirt. So to be humble is to be grounded. It is to have a right mind about your place in the grand scheme of things, to not take yourself so seriously. Humility can actually be very freeing because it allows us to be human.
"Humiliation may teach us a lot about oppression, or a lot about underdevelopment or a great deal about anger, but it will not necessarily prove that we have learned anything about humility. Benedictine humility frees the spirit; it does not batter it."
from Wisdom Distilled from the Daily: Living the Rule of Benedict Today by Joan Chittister, OSB.