Monday, January 13, 2014
Inevitably, in your life, you stumble upon The Question: If you could change anything in your life, what would it be?
As a child, I don't really think that question has the same gravitas that it does when you're an adult. If, when I was 8, I were asked that question, I'd probably say, "I want to get roller blades for Christmas!" Wow, yes, getting/not getting those roller blades were SO IMPORTANT that I absolutely HAD to go back and change that...
#sarcasm mode off
As an adult, my answer is different. At 30, if I could change anything, I wish I had enjoyed my young adulthood (from 18 - 25) more. Those are the years people really grow and change. You move away from your parents' influence and begin to discover a world of your own. You develop your own ideas and feelings and thoughts - and begin to make friends outside of your parents' circle.
Well, at least, that's what the books I've read say. My actual experience was much different.
I was incredibly shy and reclusive. I wanted so desperately to have friends, but I always felt that obligation to hurry home from class as soon as class was over, to throw most of my free time into doing homework or being with my family. Now, don't get me wrong: I do NOT regret spending family time!! I love my parents and my sister greatly! But I wish I had tried to make friends, to spend time outside of class with them DOING things, to attempt a dating relationship, to do all those crazy things and most importantly HAVE FUN.
I regret not doing more with those years - but I'm not wallowing in that regret and boohooing myself (OK, the above DID sorta sound like I was, but really, I don't do that most of the time!). Instead, I'm living my life now with no regrets.
The best example of this is my recent experience ice skating. I went ice skating 2 days before Christmas and sprained my knee. Everyone I've met is like, "I'm so sorry about that - and just before Christmas!", but I always respond, "It's OK!! I was doing something FUN for a change - I had a GREAT time!!"
I would much rather have a sprained knee from doing something FUN like ice skating than to sit at home bored and lonely and miserable, always wondering "What If". My childhood and young adult years were spent being "safe" and "secure", and I regret not doing things that many others have. No more. If it sounds fun, I want to try it. No more hiding behind Mom's skirt - I'm going to embrace life and live with no regrets!