Regrets I’ve had a few
But then again too few to mention
I did what I had to do
And saw it through without exemption
I planned each charted course
Each careful step along the byway
And more, much more than this
I did it my way
– Frank Sinatra
When I think of regret, I can’t help but hear Frank Sinatra crooning his famous song My Way. It’s about having regrets and yet living life to the fullest doing it my way.
If I had to do it all over, would I change a thing or two about what I regret?
Maybe, but then I might be living in some alternate universe similar to the movie Back to the Future II where Marty tried to change the course of history, only to have his whole life uprooted and changed for the worse, not the better. And yet, with experience comes regret.
1. Regret not enjoying being a kid when I could.
You know what they say: youth is wasted on the young.
Back then, I could ride my bike, roller skate, jump rope, and play hop scotch even if I had to sometimes break for homework, meals, and bed time. It was my duty to be a kid and not think about all the grown up problems and issues in the world.
I also thought my parents and grandparents were immortal and would always be here.
Me with my Grandparents back in the day.
I wish I wouldn’t have taken the easier, more laid back kid days that I had with my loved ones for granted. Those are times I will never, ever, get back. My grandparents are now long gone, and I miss them more than I can express. My parents are still here, but they’re getting older.
My regret is a river that runs deeper than anyone could imagine.
2. Regret being bogged down by all the teenage girl drama.
I am guilty of falling prey to this. I didn’t believe in myself, and I let my peers make me feel “less” for the way I looked, dressed, and felt about my education.
As pretty as I look, these were the rotten teen years!
I fought hard to hide just how brainy I was, and I regret not knowing sooner how sexy and beautiful it is to be smart and educated.
Now I know that beauty is only skin deep. Brains can kick beauty’s butt any day of the week.
3. Regret not enjoying the Golden Silence of my twenties.
I wish I would have thought it was important to be alone more in my early twenties. I should have been embracing my single girl days where I could stay out late, sleep in, and enjoy a hot meal without having to stop every 5 seconds when someone else needs me.
Sometimes I secretly wish for those quiet, alone days when the name “Mommy” wasn’t called out 20 times before 10 am.
I love my girls to pieces, but still I regret that I didn’t enjoy to their fullest those peaceful moments .
4. Regret not taking more pleasure in the planning of the biggest day in my life.
I regret that I wished away the planning of my wedding. I couldn’t wait to actually say, “I do”. I was truly on cloud nine after finally finding that much sought after love with my now husband, but I was so focused on the finish line that I didn’t enjoy the bumpy-but-marvelous road along the way.
Our wedding: July 6th, 2008
Don’t get me wrong; I planned every last detail and am now happily married. But as Samantha from Sex and the City told Charlotte when she morphed into bridezilla during her wedding planning, “You only get one day!” When that one day is over, it is truly and sincerely over.
The memories last, but the planning and day is behind me. I regret that I didn’t take time to enjoy all that came with being engaged and the bride-to-be.
5. Regret Wishing Away Pregnancy.
I can honestly say that we enjoyed the first few years of marriage without children.
When we finally decided to have kids, I was guilty of wanting my pregnancy to end quickly both times because of early pregnancy nausea, mid-pregnancy side effects (including peeing every 30 minutes) and late pregnancy general uncomfortableness.
Me at 5 months pregnant with Lily
Instead of taking time to indeed enjoy all the good, the bad, and the ugly that comes with being pregnant, I regret that I was so focused on being a mother and holding my babies. Both pregnancies flew by, and years later are only fleeting memories that I hold dear to my heart.
6. Regret the lost baby years.
I became a mom to two small babies in less then 16 months. I kept hoping for a time when the girls would be more self-sufficient, sleep through the night, walk, talk and so much more. I was so very tired and stressed.
Even though my girls are still young enough to still need me, they are definitely not those teeny, tiny, fragile, helpless babies we first brought home. I regret that I didn’t take more time to enjoy them being babies, even when things weren’t always so easy.
I have my fair share of regrets. I know I can’t go back to change any of the experiences that I had and must keep on doing it my way. But if I had one wish, it would be for time to slow down and to enjoy each and every stage right now. I don’t want to blink and have another 38 years filled with regret. I have to make the most of each and every experience to come.
About the Author: Janine was previously a licensed middle school teacher, who became a stay at home mom after having her second daughter. She was born and raised in NYC, but now residing with her family in the NY suburbs, while being a WAHM blogging at Confessions of A Mommyaholic, as well as running her own graphic design company at J9 Designs with two beautiful, zany, energetic daughters, husband, but still trying (key word) to keep it all in perspective by attempting to make the days and nights, too a little bit brighter. Find Janine, also, on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.