Time May Change Me, But I Can't Trace Time: Would You Do Anything Differently?
As we go through the experiences that shape our lives, most of us stop along the way to contemplate the moments that have made us who we are today. We can page back the stories in our minds to this childhood memory, or that choice we made. And sometimes we wonder—as Frost contemplated—whether a choice made a difference in our lives. A lot people say they wouldn’t do anything differently, no matter what sad or terrible things have befallen them; those things have shaped the people they are today. And in general, I feel that same way. But there is one moment in my life I’ve looked back upon many times, wishing I’d done it differently, even though in my eight year old mind I couldn’t comprehend the ramifications of my choice. My biological parents split up when I was a baby and my mother quickly found someone new. But he wasn’t just a rebound guy, he was a big-hearted young man who wasn’t afraid to take on the responsibilities of fatherhood. And so that man was in my life from the time I was about a year old, helping me navigate through a lot of messy stuff. I still saw my biological father on weekends until I was nine or ten, at which point he disappeared. The man who was with me every day was my Dad, but it took a long time before I could emotionally let go of my biological father. So when, at eight years old, he asked if he could adopt me, I said “No.” I know he understood why, but I also know it must have hurt him. Life went on and my Dad has stayed my Dad, even though he has long been divorced from my estranged, alcoholic mother. My answer to his question is the one thing that if I could, I would change about my life. For the record, we did go through the process several years ago, but the reason was not so sweet…
What about you? If you had the power, would you leave your life the same or is there something you would change; if you’d affect something, what would it be?