It’s hard to not compare ourselves to other people. While I’m at the point in my life where I don’t get jealous, I do get these twinges of regret. It usually has to do with where I’m at in life, and how other people seem to be so much better at adulting. I see a lot of inspirational memes on FaceBook about how it doesn’t matter at what age you achieve things, but following your own path is what’s important.
There does seem to be the idea going around that you graduate high school, go to college, get a good job, buy a house, and start a family. Typically before 30, maybe a little later. And plenty of people do this, but I’m aware many others do not. I’m the latter.
I’ve talked before on here about my non-traditional way of doing life. I know exactly how I got ”behind” so to speak. As a teen I didn’t dream about stability and family. I dreamed of adventures. I blame my father for this because he liked to tell me stories about all the crazy things he did growing up in the 50s and 60s, and well into his adulthood (he had me at the age of 40). All I wanted to do was live with reckless abandon and seek excitement as he had done.
And I did. I sought my adventures and had my untamed moments. I had exciting incidents, risky ventures, experimental phases, bad decisions I’ve lived to tell about, and a rollercoaster of emotions. Friends came and went, and I loved hard and lost big. My past has given me stories to tell, for sure.
Through it all I’ve been lucky. Not only am I still alive, but I’ve gotten by not focusing on my future and finances. Or I focused just enough. We didn’t have much money for half of my childhood, and as an adult, I have always been broke. Not broke as in, ”I don’t know where I’m going to sleep or how I’ll get my next meal” broke. I honestly feel for those who have struggled to such an extent. Like I said, I’ve been lucky. For me, it’s more like paycheck to paycheck broke, accumulating credit card debt along the way as I cover extra expenses.
My luck comes from my family and loved ones. My parents have always been there to help me out if I really need it. And after Paul and I got together, and I had our son, he’s been the main provider. He’s works hard to put a roof over our heads and food on the table. I don’t have to worry about those things, just mine and the kid’s extra expenses (which, wow, do they seem to add up!).
It’s also my willingness and ability to work which has prevented me from being in a totally desperate financial situation. I may not have focused on a career during my 20’s, but my parents both taught me the importance of balancing work and play. Before having kids, I always had some kind of job. I had plenty of adventures, but I was responsible in between all the fun.
And I can distinctly remember around the age of 17, promising myself I would never have any regrets. I knew they did no good. Whatever’s been done can’t be changed. You can only learn, and move forward. In my youth, this was easy. It’s only in the last few years it’s become hard. Perhaps I’m having a mid-life crisis. But I remind myself of my words, and hold on to what the young me knew…because I trust she is wiser on this subject.
Since life is all about balance, it might be time to switch my focus. I’ve had years to not concern myself with matters such as financial responsibility, but I feel the wheel turning. Writing this, I realize the regret I feel is a message to myself to shift my priorities. It doesn’t mean give up fun all together of course, (because I’ve tamed quite a bit over the years already), but to have more work/fun equilibrium.
I think it’s okay however a person walks their path—whether they choose to do things in order and on a timeline, or go random ways, searching for their purpose and destination. Neither one is right or wrong. It depends on your upbringing and personality, and what you want out of your life.
Plus the memes really are true. It’s never too late—to take another path…change your mind…start over…end something…learn.
Life is too short to have regrets.
And long enough to not take it too seriously.
What do you think about regrets, my lovely readers? Have you got any? How do you handle them? What are your priorities? I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Happy June Dreamers! 💚🌸☀️
Random photo dump of pets & flowers!