29. Do you have any regrets?
It is so easy to say, “I have no regrets. Every part of my Life is part of the greater picture of who I am today.” As much as I would like to say that is true for me and as much as I might’ve actually thought it to be true at some point in my Life, it’s not.
If given the opportunity to start over, I would talk to my grandparents more and get to know who they were when they were younger.
I would exercise more and eat less.
Not a single drop of any type of soft drink would ever cross my lips. Ever.
My appreciation of music would be more than listening enjoyment and would include the ability to play a variety of instruments. I took piano lessons for three years and played the flute for six years. There was also that brief, never-intended-for-greatness foray into bells and chimes. Can I play any of them now? Nope.
I would end things on a better note with a certain young man who thought I hung the moon and did not receive the same respect from me in return.
Along those same lines, I would not have wasted six months of my Life trying to find out why someone dumped me without warning. He quit returning my calls even though we were supposedly engaged and in love against all odds. I realize now that was clearly his loss and not mine. I just wish I had seen that then and saved myself the agony of dragging my broken heart from one breath to the next for so long.
I regret not realizing earlier in Life that it is okay to be wrong.
It is my sincere regret that I hung on to Sarah’s biological donor as long as I did and held out hope that he would grow up and embrace fatherhood. The first year of her Life might’ve been much less traumatic if I had cut those ties long before restraining orders were needed.
By this age, I should not be tackling debt and considering opening retirement accounts. Those things should already be well maintained.
Of course, it would’ve been nice not to have to go through the Hell that was my first marriage or the disappointing end to my second marriage. Ideally, I would’ve married your Daddy many years ago and started a family much sooner.
I can’t think about those things, though. Or rather, I won’t.
Regretsville is a tough place to live. There is far too much living left to do to be constantly looking back and thinking of the what-ifs and if-onlys. Life will hand you many chances to make choices, and you will not always choose wisely. You will have regrets. Of course you will. We aren’t meant to live a perfect Life. We all fall and get back up. It’s part of maturing and becoming adults.
It’s only what you do once you have fallen that matters. The rest is just a stumblingly imperfect choice in your journey. No matter how old or wise you become, you will still fall and have chances to correct your path. Personally, I choose not to spend too much time looking over my shoulder as I dust myself off and keep going.