If YOU Could Go Back In Time In Your Life...

  • New to the board or trying to figure out how something works here? Check out the User Guide.
  • Hot Topics is on indefinite hiatus.

  • The message board is closed between the hours of 4pm ET Friday and 8:30am ET Monday.

    As always, the Board will be open to read and those who have those privileges can still send private messages and post to Profiles.

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#67
Knowing what you know now...?

I have asked this question often sitting around with friends, and this was before I read this book. Say you could go back... knowing how your life has turned out... are there changes you would make? Different paths you would take knowing that with the "Butterfly Effect," a small change could make dramatic differences in the long run. Not always for the better.

I always say, for better or worse, I would avoid the blind date that led to meeting my first wife and the three years of heartache and pain that followed. There were cars I wish I hadn't bought, and some I should have never sold. Women I shouldn't have dated... but those actions wouldn't be worth the risk of a change...

So... if you could go back... would you?
Honestly... I don't think I would... even though I'm broken and might be able to change it. The new path could be a lot shorter and much more painful.
I would love to go back and change some of the poor choices I made. I know exactly the moment when I made a choice that would affect every single thing that happened to me after. There was this guy who wrote for Backwood Homes Magazine, which is a small magazine, meant for outdoors people and those who are interested in learning to live off the grid. I never read the magazine but I heard the story. There were always shortages in the 'personal' page so the writer wrote an ad that said (from memory--something like), "Wanted: someone to take a time travel mission with me. Use of weaponry a bonus but not required. Safety not guaranteed."

Well, SO many people thought it was a real ad and for years, he got tons of mail--and he said the letters were funny (sometimes), interesting (sometimes) and heartbreaking (often). He said he got the most mail from people in prison, who wished they could go back to the moment they murdered a person, raped a woman, or did whatever crime that landed them there.

I didn't commit a crime except to myself. But if I were to go back, it was the day I decided to mask what had happened rather than deal with it. At the time, I was 22 years old, sitting in a bar in the Algonquin hotel. The story is actually in my book--my book is partly biographical. But what a moment it was to change my life.

I can't wait to read what everyone else said too. What a great question as well!
 

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#69
There's an old saying that 'he who regrets nothing learns from everything'...this bugs me. I think regret serves a purpose; it is a type of grieving that hopefully leads to acceptance and avoidance of cyclic mistakes. So, yes, I'm one who'd go back in time. This isn't to say that I wouldn't commit a whole new set of mistakes (and, therefore, new regrets) but it would satisfy that human longing for atonement, a correcting of wrongs, a settling of scores.
Plus, it would be my duty to rid the world of M.C. Hammer parachute pants.
I think regret is a useless emotion, honestly. It serves no purpose other than to make a person feel worse--and if one feels regret then the lesson has been learned (whatever it was). I used to always tell my students whom I caught plagiarizing, "It's not our mistakes that define us but how we get ourselves back up and brush ourselves up to learn from them." I never wanted to kill a student's dream and I always made it clear that I had screwed up WAY more than anyone.
 

Doc Creed

Well-Known Member
Nov 18, 2015
14,841
65,895
United States
#70
I think regret is a useless emotion, honestly. It serves no purpose other than to make a person feel worse--and if one feels regret then the lesson has been learned (whatever it was). I used to always tell my students whom I caught plagiarizing, "It's not our mistakes that define us but how we get ourselves back up and brush ourselves up to learn from them." I never wanted to kill a student's dream and I always made it clear that I had screwed up WAY more than anyone.
To my mind, regret and dread are rooted in fear, simply two sides of a coin. Regret is the "fear" of the past and dread is the fear of the future. Yes, regret is useless and a waste of time and energy but, in regards to the futile contemplation of changing one's past, it can be the perfect motivator...maybe the only motivator. Therefore, paradoxically, it serves some function or purpose.
 
Last edited:

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#71
To my mind, regret and dread are rooted in fear, simply two sides of a coin. Regret is the "fear" of the past and dread is the fear of the future. Yes, regret is useless and a waste of time and energy but, in regards to the futile contemplation of changing one's past, it can be the perfect motivator...maybe the only motivator. Therefore, paradoxically, it serves some function or purpose.
I can agree with that--because the lesson is learned and that is its function/purpose. But wallowing in regret is a waste of time. It's better to go out and do good works to make up for the havoc one creates. If one truly is regretful about something, he/she acts in the opposite manner once they wake up and realize he/she has been a douche. :eagerness:
 

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#72
I like what Robert Gray wrote. He has put it very well, how I feel about the bigger picture. But I would really like to go back to when I "broke up" with a roommate and left the guitar we'd jointly bought -- with a loan from my credit union. I would take that Gibson Les Paul Custom 50th Anniversary Special Edition. Damn skippy I would.
Oh that guitar. I am a guitarist. I dream of a Gibson Les Paul Custom 50th Anniversary Special Edition. I'd get that back too!
 

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#73
Thanks for the praise of post. The first time I have ever said those thoughts out loud.

I assume I am still in the depression stage of grief somewhat. Can't find many positives. Haven't reached acceptance quite yet I guess.

My family has always been farmers by trade. I myself went off to college and returned because...well not sure exactly why, either I didn't want to have a boss or I liked 14 hour workdays. Anyway spent almost 47 years of those work days with my father.

Left a big hole as I know losing a parent has for people since time began. Only problem is that somewhere in those 47 years he somehow became my best friend too. So I guess I feel like I lost twice as much in one afternoon.

Anyway I know it is not a history changing wish, like killing baby Hitler or telling Hindenburg passengers to take the bus , but those words are the ones I wish I would have said.

Sorry I turned you guys' forum into a shrink's couch.
My heart goes out to you. I lost my mother on New Year's Day this year. I think of her every single day. (((((hugs))))).
 

thekidd12

Baseball is a good thing.Always was,always will be
Apr 8, 2016
1,386
7,299
54
NC
#74
My heart goes out to you. I lost my mother on New Year's Day this year. I think of her every single day. (((((hugs))))).
As I am sure everyone you know has told you I am sorry for your loss. I wish I could tell you, as I am sure everyone that knows you has, that time will make things better or "heals all wounds". I wish I could, but this December 4th it will be 3 years since the sudden passing of my father.

I too think of him every day. Saw his truck out of the corner of my eye last week where I parked it 3 years ago and wondered why he stopped there. Then remembered.

The loss does become less of a sharp pain and more like a tooth that bothers you each time you drink something cold. I wish you well in your process of dealing with loss.

Just remember that their bodies may go but our parents always live on through their children and perhaps their children's children.

If you ever need to just vent message me. I spew a lot of nonsense sometimes but am told I listen well.
 
Last edited:

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#75
As I am sure everyone you know has told you I am sorry for your loss. I wish I could tell you, as I am sure everyone that knows you has, that time will make things better or "heals all wounds". I wish I could, but this December 4th it will be 3 years since the sudden passing of my father.

I too think of him every day. Saw his truck out of the corner of my eye last week where I parked it 3 years ago and wondered why he stopped there. Then remembered.

The loss does become less of a sharp pain and more like a tooth that bothers you each time you drink something cold. I wish you well in your process of dealing with loss.

Just remember that their bodies may go but our parents always live on through their children and perhaps their children's children.

If you ever need to just vent message me. I spew a lot of nonsense sometimes but am told I listen well.
I'm so sorry for the pain you went through. I also want to thank you so much for your gentle and such appropriate words. I know what you mean by thinking our parents are still around and how it sometimes surprises us that they aren't.

My Mom and I talked all the time but we had Sundays as marked as the one time we'd make time, regardless of how busy each of us were. Just this last Sunday I woke up and thought, "Oh I only have a couple of hours before Mom calls." Then I cried. I know it will lessen...but it still hurts so much.

Just like going through pictures and seeing one of the two of us taken the last time I saw her. Damn, here I go again. Thank you so much. And I may take you up on your offer one of these days but only if you promise to do the same if you need a bit of a rant. From what everyone has said (including you), it never goes away.
 

Tery

A homeward angel on the fly
Moderator
Apr 12, 2006
13,525
35,129
Bremerton, Washington, United States
#76
Oh that guitar. I am a guitarist. I dream of a Gibson Les Paul Custom 50th Anniversary Special Edition. I'd get that back too!
Thanks. Yeah, it was special.

I just want to say that my heart goes out to all who have lost parents. It will be 8 years on Nov.2 that my Mom died suddenly. It's a sucky club to be a member of. :(
 

melindaville

Well-Known Member
Nov 14, 2011
307
1,061
Boston and San Francisco
#77
Thanks. Yeah, it was special.

I just want to say that my heart goes out to all who have lost parents. It will be 8 years on Nov.2 that my Mom died suddenly. It's a sucky club to be a member of. :(
Tery, I have a feeling that it will still be tough 8 years from now. I'm so sorry for your loss, as I know (now) how really devastating losing a beloved parent can be. (((((((((((Hugs))))))))))).
 

do1you9love?

Happy to be here!
Feb 18, 2012
7,646
55,614
Virginia
#78
Thanks. Yeah, it was special.

I just want to say that my heart goes out to all who have lost parents. It will be 8 years on Nov.2 that my Mom died suddenly. It's a sucky club to be a member of. :(
That it is. Since my dad died last July, I talk to my mom nearly every night. She recently said how much she appreciated it. I would sometimes go a full week before I called. I regret not doing it when I could have talked to both of them.
 

Tery

A homeward angel on the fly
Moderator
Apr 12, 2006
13,525
35,129
Bremerton, Washington, United States
#79
**hugs back**

I think TheKidd put it very well:

The loss does become less of a sharp pain and more like a tooth that bothers you each time you drink something cold. I wish you well in your process of dealing with loss.
There will always be a parent-shaped hole in our lives. All we can do is carry on. :love_heart:
 

thekidd12

Baseball is a good thing.Always was,always will be
Apr 8, 2016
1,386
7,299
54
NC
#80
OK after revisiting this thread, kind of a bittersweet experience, I have another close second time that I would go back.

As many of you know that have read the "drivel" that this board has allowed me to post, on March 1st of this year I took a trip in the middle of night to a local hospital. After EMTs put me on the gurney in my living room I looked at my youngest son and told him quite confidently "I will see you in a little while". 6 hours, 2 defibrillator shocks and 2 stents later I did get to see him. First thing I said to him was "I love you". Should have said it 6 hours before. Now I tell him every time we are going to be apart. Man he is getting so tired of it.

Guess what? I realized we never know if it might be the last time. If you care about someone tell them.

Don't give yourself a chance to regret not saying how you feel.

All our times here are finite.

Now that I am done preaching if someone will show me how to make one of them "GoFundMe" pages I will take up a collection. :heheh:

See drivel.
 
We’ve created a Stephen King Library action for the 
			  Google Assistant and skill for Amazon Alexa. It'll give 
			  you a personalized reading recommendations based on your 
			  answers to a series of questions—so what are you waiting 
			  for? Find out which Stephen King book you should read 
			  next!