Regrets I've had a few . . .
Updated: Apr 21
I had a rare parenting moment with my son, Anthony. We were talking and I heard the words I rarely if ever hear as a parent: "You were right. I should have listened to you." I will admit I pretended I didn't hear it just to be able to hear those words one more time. I wasn't sure I would hear them ever again so I wanted to relish the moment. When I asked him to explain - he said "I shouldn't have gone to Western for college. I should have stayed home, not worked and gone to school full time. I would have been done by now, Dad would have paid for the entire thing and I would be established in my career".
He was my child that always does it his own way. When broaching college in high school - his response was always, I'm going get my degree but I'm going to do it my on my own terms.
We continued to discuss his decisions. He said I wanted material things. I wanted to be able to buy nice cars. I was too wrapped up in that. He ended with "I regret my decisions".
I began thinking about regrets in life. The definition of Regrets - feel sad, repentant, or disappointed over (something that has happened or been done, especially a loss or missed opportunity).
Do we really need to think about regrets as missed opportunities or is regret just another one of life's lessons. Lessons that we need to help us grow. Do we allow ourselves to wallow and stay in regret or do we take it a lesson learned and move forward?
I'm a firm believer that there are no coincidences in life. I feel everything happens for a reason. People and situations come into your life to teach you. Regrets are just another one of life's teachers. I told Anthony not to waste his energy on regrets. It can't be changed, undone or forgotten - just take it as a lesson learned. I reminded him that he's moving forward and that his regrets have given what he has needed to grow. He is the person he is today in part because of his regrets.
He sat, listened and took it in in his usual Anthony fashion - which means there was no real reaction. I did get a nod which I took as he was processing what I said. And it was a "yes" nod. Score! Who knows, maybe years down the line I may get another parenting moment - where he comes to me and says the words every parent yearns to hear - "Mom you were right".