All My Mistakes

This morning I listened as a man poured out his frustration and sorrow at events and opportunities long passed. Regrets littered his story, dragging him back in time. Would it have been different if he’d only … ?And the weight of countless missed opportunities was pulling him down.

I guess we all do that from time to time as part of the human condition. I call it the “would-coulda-shoulda”s. Looking around the room with red-rimmed eyes, he spread his hands out in a gesture of release, the burden of his thoughts now mutually shared and dispersed to those of us surrounding him in the room. The admission of what was in his head asking for experience and hope for easing the ache in his heart. When his eyes came to rest on me, I spoke what was in my heart.

I have always had a need to reflect on decisions in my past, even as a young child. The difference today is that I recognize that by dwelling there, I’m missing the opportunities right here in this moment! Nothing is gained by resenting myself for choices already made. They’re done. What can I learn from them to help me the next time? How can I use those experiences to lay the groundwork for a better life TODAY?

There is a song I love by Teitur that says,
“There comes a time/you must stay in the moment while your heart’s still bleeding/ and there comes a time/where you must walk away, though your heart’s still beating…

Who is to say who wins or who loses/I sing to myself at the end of the day/ when I know what the blue’s is/ ALL my mistakes have become masterpieces…”

So when I find myself slipping into the familiar “shouda-coulda-woulda”s today, I recognize it, stop, and focus intently on what’s going on around me…the sounds, the variances in temperature, the smells, the feel of my skin, the weight of my body as it rests against the chair – whatever I can find to GROUND me in that moment. And while giving a nod of acknowledgment to those regrets, I make the conscious decision to actively appreciate what is my NOW. Its with faith that by doing so, my present won’t become a regret of missed opportunity in my future.

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2 Responses

  1. i know what you mean. and try to remind myself of that when my mind starts dwelling in the past. it’s just so hard sometimes to shut the past up….. ’cause like you said, today is what counts, is what matters, is what is important.

  2. I needed to read this. Thanks.

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