Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Regrets? I've Had a Few!

But then again, haven't we all. If we all delve back into the past, and take a look at some of the skeltons that still lurk in the great closet of life, we have to adimt we all have some regrets. Or at least wonder if some of the "shoulda, woulda, couldas" of life would have made a BIG difference in our lives if we'd have done things differently.
Love: Ah yes! I think we all, If we have the cojones to admit it, have the one BIG love of our lives that we either acted on or didn't act on. I personally did act on the BIG love of my life, and have been happily married to her for almost 37 years. I know a person struggling right now with this delema. I think this person, I will call Jan, is blaming himself for a love not working out. As a very close friend of Jan's, I can say that he is not to blame. The other party was not considerate of Jan's feelings and circumstances then and isn't now. There has to be willingness for compromise on the part of both parties, and there wasn't. I believe in the adage, "tis far better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all." I had another romance once, too, but it didn't work out and I feel that there was a better plan for me. Now I KNOW it!
My biggest regret is that I didn't have the nerve to move. I was offered a better job in a town far away from family and friends many many years ago. My wife and I were newly married and expecting our first child. I could not see that moving would be to our benefit. I still wonder how things would have played out had we moved. Maybe we wouldn't have liked being that far away from family, and maybe we would have moved back. But I will always wonder. The job market hasn't always been kind to me, and just maybe it would have been better if I had just had the nerve to try something different.
I regret not finishing my college education. Yes, I have an associates degree, but I really wanted a bachelor's. I never finished it. Now, at age 61, I really don't have the desire or the ambition to pursue it anymore.
I regret not becoming a teacher. That goes with the degree thing above, but at least I am pursuing that career path by being able to work with "my" kids as an instructional aide, and had an experience of a lifetime teaching prep English at a junior college a few years ago. I was very good at it, too. Maybe it is something that I can do again later down the road.
Like I said, I have a few regrets. But very few. I guess I am lucky. My advice to those of you harboring regrets is to just bite the bullet, hold your chin up high, and get on with your life. It is to short to worry about "shoulda, woulda, couldas."


Lilith said...

You're never too old to go back and finish your degree!

Jimmie Earl said...

lilith: Thanks for the encouragement, but age is not as much as a factor as $$, time, and of course ambition. Can't imagine having to actually study "grown up" stuff after seventh and eighth grade level English, math and science. I don't think my brain works like that anymore!

Northern Exposure said...

I lost the great love of my life ten years ago to another man. I understand why and in her place might have made the same choice she did. She had a young child to care for and I was in no position to be a provider to anyone.

Recently we reconnected and, though we have struggled with our feelings for each other trying to get past the hurt of the past, it looked like we might finally make something happen. But, alas, again I lose out to another man.

Regrets? She is one of only two regrets I have. I wish we could have been married, she and I. And I wish we could have had lots and lots of children together. They would have been beautiful and smart, like her, musical and athletic like me.

She is both my great love and my great regret.

Jimmie Earl said...

N.E. It's time to move on. Forgiveness doesn't seem to be in your vocabulary, which is something maybe you could work on.
We all screw up somewhere along the way. I am over 60 and can admit that I have. Just put it all behind you and move forward. Regrets and guilt can eat you alive. Sounds harsh, but oh, so true.