If there’s one thing I know of life (in my not so long span of being alive),is that- we all screw up. We all make mistakes. And worse still, those mistakes haunt us in the form of regrets.
It’s a strong word- regret. It has the ability to single handedly pull the bandage off of a wound you’ve nursed and nursed, and cared for like an infant.
And, you know what? It’s unfair- because, clearly our mistake has cost us, clearly it has altered our life in some way. Why must the aftershocks smack us down, too? What’s funny is there is always room to learn from your mistakes. But your regrets? No, no, no. They’re like the things you lose in a fire- you can replace them, but you can never really replace them.
So, when you’re old, balding and sitting in your chair, contemplating your life, chances are one of your regrets will be these:-
1 ) Of not having had said anything.
No, seriously, this is the scariest one. When life cornered you, you lost all perspective, a situation demanded for you to speak up- and you stood still, and said nothing. You let the moment pass, without your input, and that hurt you, big time.
It’s the deal that went wayward, it’s the time you accepted the bullying being done to you, it’s the silence you presented to an ultimatum. It’s the noise in your head that won’t let you sleep- because you had the chance, and made nothing of it.
2) Of having had said too much.
This is that wincing blow to your conscience where, a terrible fight- a disgraceful fallout- because the words you said-harsh, bitter and venomous- caused the person to walk out and away from you. This one pricks the most, especially when you knew that you should’ve-hell, could’ve- handled the situation in a better way. The saddest part? All the good you ever did for that person,was immediately flushed down the drain, because of that one moment of indiscretion.
3) Of having said/done too little.
You know how you tried to make that one person stay- because nothing you did, was ever enough for them? You begged and begged- stooped to levels you couldn’t even have imagined- and kept wondering what in the name of hell, were you to do, to make them want you like you did. It’s the ghost of your past, that comes forth, time to time, especially when life’s already bogged you down. You tell yourself,that you never did enough, that had you tried harder, things would’ve been different. What you don’t realise is that they never would’ve stayed, because they never planned to, anyway- and nothing you could’ve done would have changed that.
4) Of not having had taken chances.
That one circumstance- where had you said yes, things would have turned out much better, it’s the opportunity you let slip because of that one instant of uncertainty, it’s the heart you broke- because you were unwilling to bank on an impossible relationship, to avoid more heartbreak in the future. It’s a giant pile of self loathing, topped with unsuccess- and if that’s not bad enough, there is enough reminder of your failure- the people who took those chances, and succeeded. And that hurts, like nothing you’ve ever known before.
5) Of having had taken too much of a gamble.
You loved to live on the edge- you loved it. So much so, that all that mattered was that thrill- your unrelenting need for taking chances, your ‘all-or-nothing-give-them-hell’ attitude. But, no risk can guarantee 100% success- you know that, because you learnt it the hard, painful way. You’ve had to bear losses, and irreparable damage even-and you keep telling yourself, that had you limited your risks, you’d be in a safer, nicer, better home. This is that pain in the tooth, that never really goes away- because you were stupid enough to play Dentist one fine morning, just for the fun of it.
6) Of not having had enjoyed the finer things in life.
Every year, all day, your job, your kids, your entrepreneurship sucked your all time and energy- and being the determined, good soldier in the game of life, you played each part well. But, reflecting upon your own life- amidst all the commotion around you- you don’t even realise when your hopes and dreams, your bucket list never really came true! It’s like the acidity you feel in your mouth, after having finished the biggest meal- the bitter aftertaste, the realisation that despite everything, the meal wasn’t so scrumptious after all.