“If I could save time in a bottle, the first thing that I’d like to do, is to save every day ’til eternity passes away just to spend them with you.”
– Jim Croce
MSH thinks going back in time and reliving his life sounds wonderful. Many people I’ve asked agree with him. Give them a second chance at life, they’d take it!
Me? No, thank you! End of discussion. No way.
Well, one way, maybe. If I could remember everything from my first time through, then sure, I’d be willing to face my childhood, puberty, early marriage, and every other stage of my life with confidence. But without my memories, my hard-earned learning curve intact, there’s no way I’d have a do over.
Too many regrets, that’s why.
For instance. Instead of letting my eighteen month old son cry himself to sleep laying next to his bedroom door, I’d let him fall asleep snuggled in my arms on the couch every single night until he decided he preferred his bed. Call me foolish. I don’t care. I can still see his little tear streaked sleeping face peeking out under the gap between the floor and the door.
I’d have bought those Wizard of Oz sparkly red shoes for my youngest. I wouldn’t have put off getting that sailor dress my daughter wanted. I would have asked more questions, assumed less, pried more, talked directly, been less afraid.
Instead of anxiously awaiting the day my kids would start school I’d clean the house less and play with them more.
My own teenage years were a horror story of stupid decisions, bad behavior, rebellion and embarrassment. I’d just completely remake myself. I’d be friendly and outgoing instead of trembling and introverted. I’d care less about what everyone else thought about me and wonder more about how they felt and how I could help. I’d complain less to my mom and help out more. No, really, I would. I’d soak in every moment of being young and healthy and energetic. I’d run with more abandon, sing louder, laugh longer, smile more often, tell jokes, be nicer to my sisters and tell my brothers that I thought they were cool.
If I could have time in a bottle…pretty much everything that happened from day one until now would be different. I’d be different. In fact, I wouldn’t even be me anymore, would I?
That’s a scary thought. A hopeful thought. A weird thought.
I wouldn’t change a thing.
Or I’d change everything.