Tonight I listened to old songs, ones I loved when they were new, and I had a firm thought: I have no regrets.
There’s nothing I wish I could do over, or get another chance at, try to do what I didn’t do, or not do what I shouldn’t have. Everything in my life has led me to this point, and to change one thing would change everything, and that’s not okay. I want to be where I am now.
But if I could go back, maybe I’d look more for what I could have gotten in high school, rather than obsessing on getting out. No, I probably couldn’t have done that.
What about my university years? Would they be different?
I had points—especially in my last couple years at university—where I was completely in the moment. I wish there had been more moments like that, times when I was aware of little else but what was happening at that particular time—boyfriends, new friends, new social opportunities, new freedom—and not worry about what was still to come. Then again, no, I moved on.
My early years out of university gave me some awesome times, and I met truly awesome people, and I wish I’d had more moments with them—it was all over so fast! And yet, I also had terrible people in my life at that time, people who beat down my self confidence, my self esteem, my drive, my spirit. No, on balance, I’m better off without those people, and they were part of those days, so, I wouldn’t repeat them, either.
At every stage of my life, I’ve had moments I wish had been longer, people I wish I’d been with more than I was. But many of those people are still in my life, or, thanks to Facebook, they are again. So, what have I really lost—apart from those who did me harm?
Over the years, I’ve accumulated memories and adventures and knowledge and experience and love and new friends and why would I want to miss out on any of that? Collectively, they all matter more to me than those times I wish I could have experienced more deeply or longer.
Everything in my life has led me to the point I’m at now. Loss is part of that, and so is the wish that I’d been aware enough to be in the moment more than I was. But, even those moments—perhaps squandered—helped lead me to where I am now.
I have my heart, my home, my husband, and a life filled with love and adventure. Had any of those earlier moments been different, all that followed might have been entirely different.
And that is why I have no regrets.
Listening to music from my past can remind me of that.