There are many things in life that we could have done. There are probably many more that maybe we should have done, but didn't. At least looking back on your life, you can say you know what the results of inaction have been. Would you do the things you didn't if you got a second go at it all? History tends to repeat itself so you likely wouldn't be in any different a place in your life than you are at this moment, and still we look back on our lives with a list of should have's and could have's that would give Mr. Clause a run for his money.
Yes, we could have moved to Hawaii and been a professional surfer... or professional bum. We could have finished the theology degree and become a priest... or pedophile. We could have wrote the greatest American novel, sold the movie rights, and lived a life of luxury... or spend every second or third month in rehab. We could have finished that degree in Existential Philosophy... or do and be nothing. We should have put others first, but we spend time on number one. We should have spent more time with loved ones, but we love them regardless. We should have been more open with the people around us, but we show vulnerability to those that matter. We should have finished that book, but we read so many other interesting comics. We should have made a more deliberate difference in someones life, but we make a difference in small ways every day. We can spend our lives worrying about them, or we can pick up where we are and get on with life. Today is a good day to start, as it is Toss Away the Should Haves and Could Haves Day.
There is a blog I came across called My Big Regret. I stumbled across this 'regret':
What kind of life might I have had? Maybe I would have gotten married. Maybe I would have had kids. Maybe I could have received my PhD. Maybe I could have traveled. The entire trajectory of my life has been shaped by a disease I have no control over. It has changed me into a person I don't want to be. - 40/F 1This made me sad. Maybe, could have, should have... My best girlfriend, my sister, has MS. Despite the challenges that this disease puts on her life, she married - walked down the aisle with the aid of her trusted service dog. She had children with the aid of excellent medical care. She has a good friends, good family (myself included), she has a life to be proud of in spite of the challenges. Sure she should have lived disease free - but she doesn't. I'm sure she could have lived with regret and remorse - but she lives, and I am so very proud of her and proud to call her sister.
My sister travels, goes to yoga and movies, shops, picks up groceries, loves her children, plays and reads, keeps the family organized, tries new treatments... takes charge of her independence. That power wheelchair she cruises around in certainly helps. July is Wheelchair Beautification Month. Xzibit... Pimp this ride!!
1. Regret found on My Big Regret blog.