It is an awful emotion.
I have had lots of obstacles thrown in my path during my lifetime. Obstacles that I had no control over.
Deaths of loved ones - parents, sister, brother-in-law, and my own spouse. Enduring the fallout of a divorce between my father and step-mother - a woman that treated me as her own child and is the only memory I have of a mother. All obstacles outside my control.
I have no regrets about any of these events. Sadness from these events however will be with me forever. But not regret. With the exception of my mother, due to my age when she passed, I have no regrets about these relationships. I will always miss them.
I still find myself wishing I could pick up the phone to call them. I still have my brother-in-law's phone number in my contacts. I talked to him a lot after Brian's passing as he and I could relate to how we were both feeling having lost a spouse. It took me years to not pick-up the phone on a Sunday evening to call my father.
Regret does fill my life though.
Regret for not taking chances;
regret for taking some chances;
regret for sharing too much of myself with others that didn't deserve so much of me;
regret for being too guarded;
regret for not sharing feelings and finding I was too late;
regret for misreading situations;
regret for sharing my feelings other times while misreading situations;
regret for making assumptions.
Regret for standing still for too long and becoming stuck.
Regret for playing it safe and creating a life which brings me little joy on a daily basis.
Regret for letting life slip by.
I am in a bit of a melancholy state at the moment as I sit on a flight returning home from a weekend in Austin, TX. A weekend surrounded by friends and LIVESTRONG love. I am excited to see my children but I am not happy about returning to the life I have created for myself. A life filled with regrets.
I was reminded of these regrets as I sat in the airport and looked around me. People excited about their adventures, people with loved ones. Yes, maybe that's how they view me too but doubtful as I spent most of the time fighting back tears. Tears driven from regret. I realized I have given up on being incredibly happy in my life...although I can be spontaneous, generous and fun-loving, I am not 75% of the time. 25% is not good enough for me....and it should not be for any of us.
The excitement of going to Austin was replaced by an underlying sadness and regret a few weeks ago.
I realized some feelings I had that I should have shared some time ago and made assumptions which I kept to myself. I finally shared these...and mind you, I didn't share them well. Although I shared them directly with the person involved, I masked them in anger. I recognize that in sharing these too late, and making assumptions I should have asked about, that I have more than likely lost that friendship forever....all because I never confronted emotions....because I played it safe....because I allowed hurt from others to cause me to make assumptions of this person. A friendship that was incredibly important to me. A friend that I had a deep connection with. A friend that can never be replaced.
Regretful. Sadness for my missed opportunity. Sadness for the emptiness created by the void not having this person as any part of my life. Regretful.
I am filled with a heavy heart....and the resolution that I will not allow my life to be on hold.
And I refuse to create any more regret.
I am not sure what that will look like, where I will end up, but I can guarantee you, I will be a new and improved me.