Sunday, 6 December 2009

If Only...the two saddest words in the world

A recent post by fellow blogger Hunter (over at the brilliant Time Crook) got me to thinking. I could demonstrate my wittiness here by inserting 'yes it hurt' or 'that's new' but it would be a lie.

Thinking does not hurt. Nor is it new. I think far too much. All. The. Damn. Time.

As I approach my 25th birthday (8 days, not that I'm counting), I am taking stock of my life. To some this may seem premature; the kind of thing appropriate only for the wrinkled as they sit in armchairs approaching 90. But I like to reflect. See how far I've come, what I've achieved. What I'd like to achieve next. Introspection is good for the soul.

So it follows that Hunter's post resonated with me. He wrote a moving account of childhood regret and I was surprised that his younger self experienced this cruel emotion at such a young age. I've always assumed, perhaps wrongfully, that we only regret things at a more advanced age. When we've seasoned the ability to understand and appreciate our actions, in-actions and wrongdoings. Consequently, I started to think of my own regrets in life. And here came my unintentional revelation:

I have none. Sure, I used to. I thought I did. But as I've got older, I regret not a single thing. Moment. Choice. Person. Situation. Event. Feeling. Not even wearing that pink and green shell-suit when I was five years old. (It was the 80s and fashion was flammable; give a girl a break).

Okay, so that's a silly example. But I figured, if I was to regret everything that has bought pain or difficulty, confusion or disappointment; I'd be crippled under its weight. I've learned from every choice and action that has resulted in a mistake. If I regretted those mistakes, it would mean I'd regret that chance to learn and the path I'm now on. I cannot and will not regret that.

Regret isn't wrong. It is, after-all, a human quality that we cannot escape. But if we learn to accept our mistakes, actions and in-actions that result in this cruel emotion, we won't waste so much time in the past. We'll be more open for the future, for the here and now.

Sure, life is hard sometimes but it's also far too short.

What say you, reader?


  1. I spent many years regreting certain things before I learned how to let go of the past. I'm glad you learned how to do this at such a young age.

  2. You've got a lot of years left to do plenty of things you might regret yet Lou - you might even enjoy one or two of them. Nice post.

  3. Hi, Lou. Nice post indeed.

    I think that seed of regret is evidence that you've grown from an experience. The key is to take what you've learned and apply it going forward as opposed to being crippled by it.

    Wishing you a very happy (early) birthday!

  4. Regret is wasted energy. Even if something is learned from that which is regreted. Be here now. A very happy birthday to you Lou.

  5. one great thing for being so young is to go and make a lot of regrets before it's too late! i mean it. if it weren't for regrets we'll never grow and learn, or have a new realization of how great those experiences are.

  6. Lou, I enjoy your posts very much.

    I never regretted anything at all either, until the birth of my first child. Then, late at night after tending to her, lots of things came to my mind and I felt regret. I suppose new motherhood shook me up a bit and the mind late at night is open to thoughts normally shut and locked away.

    Have a Happy Birthday! I never ever regret cake. :)

  7. Thanks for the comments everyone! It's good to see everyone's viewpoint on this subject. Some of my friend's think it's impossible to have no regrets but i do not lie.

    As i said, i've definately made mistakes and i've learnt from them. But i'd never regret them. Not enough room! hehe :)


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