A little note: Once again, I've pulled out an essay I wrote in the 90's. Why this one? I'm not really sure. I had a wonderful weekend in Vermont, met and made friends I want to keep, and fell totally in love with New England so this one is kind of an odd choice---I'm actually quite happy about my trip. My only regret about it is that I couldn't stay long enough.But then again too few to mention.”
“Regrets I’ve had a few
“Regrets I’ve had a few
The Chairman of the Board had it right. . .at least at first. Everyone has regrets. . .soft regrets. . .hard regrets. . .heartbreaking regrets. . .and half remembered regrets. Yet to go around proudly declaring that we have none seems to be in vogue. Apparently it is considered psychologically unhealthy to have regrets. It’s incomprehensible. Regrets are so human.
OK, so is guilt but that’s not regret. Guilt is always over something a person perceives to have done wrong. Regret is a feeling of sorrow over not having done something or having done something incorrectly. They’re not quite the same thing.
After a certain length of time on this planet, one soon comes to the realization that there are some things they will never do or have. The vast majority of those things we can simply shrug off. There are some we cannot.
Do I have regrets? Oh, yes. I have two major regrets actually, although it’s difficult to call them regrets. And they will probably sound silly to anyone but myself. . .but, hey, they’re my regrets, not someone else’s. I cannot decide now in my life that I will do something about them; I cannot do anything about them. It is simply too late.
I regret that I have never been first in any man’s life. Sounds silly, yes? I have never been anyone’s first choice. . .never. Every man in my life has been someone else’s. . .someone he chose first. I will never know what it is like to step into a man’s life without it being occupied by others: an ex-wife, children. Physically, mentally, or emotionally, they’re there. I’ve never experienced a man in my life without them. At my age, I probably never will. I would have liked to have known what that was like.
I regret that I only have one child. Yes, I love my child dearly but I always wanted more than one. In all actuality, I wanted a bunch of them. I wasn’t infertile; I could have had more. Yet I had this strange principle. . .I would not make any man a father who did not want to be one. So one is all I have when my heart always yearned for more. Now time and biology are against me; I can have no more children.
Just a couple of regrets. . .probably too few to mention but nothing I can do about them; they remain regrets. I never do believe people when they tell me they have no regrets. Not really.