Many of my readers open up to me in ways that are quite beautiful, and I felt that perhaps once in a while I should share my thoughts beyond feminism. I get a bit of writer’s block now and then when I have things on my mind. It’s as if those thoughts are evicting creativity, and nothing can take its place until I face them. So, here it goes…
I don’t believe the generic saying that everyone mumbles as though it were a well rehearsed lie when you ask if they have regrets. They always slight their chins and exclaim proudly: “No, if I hadn’t made my mistakes I wouldn’t be here/who I am today. I regret nothing, and that’s how I choose to live.” Well, that’s all good and dandy, but I’m quite certain that spitting in little Susie Thompson’s hair in first grade didn’t do you any favors on your path to becoming an Engineer. Really, I think it’s quite arrogant to not see the wrong in your mistakes. Perhaps you can’t change the past, but you can at least take that lesson and apply it to the future.
Personally, I regret a lot of things in my life. For those of you who don’t know, my mother was diagnosed with stage four lung and brain cancer in May of this year. I took the Fall off from college to help her through treatment, and it’s been quite the emotional journey thus far. My mother has smoked since she was fifteen. My grandfather smoked until he was sixty-three, and then quit. My aunt smoked until the day she died of brain cancer, and I think I’ve heard that both of my great great grandfathers smoked as well. Although, I can never be too sure. In fact, I smoked for five years until I met my boyfriend and my mother had what we thought was a false cancer scare two years ago.
I remember being a little girl at the age of five or six. My school had a mandatory health class on the dangers of smoking, drugs, and drinking. I was absolutely horrified when I saw that picture of a blackened lung. Up until that point I had no indication that smoking was bad or harmful. It was just something that adults did to me, like drinking coffee. I ran home that day to confront my mother. I took her cigarettes from her when she wasn’t looking, tore them to pieces, and hid each pack in my toy box. She eventually found them and was quite displeased. She asked why I had done it, and I told her that I learned that smoking killed, and I didn’t want to lose my Mommy. She laughed and promised me that nothing would ever happen to her, and I believed her until five months ago. I regret not doing more. I regret accepting a comforting lie instead of pushing for the truth, maybe things would be different somehow.
I try to push the reality of my mother’s illness out of my head. I won’t allow myself to think about it when I have the option, but there are nights that I cannot sleep from the shock cutting through my core and taking my breath when it leaves. I don’t know if any of you have ever faced cancer with a loved one, but it’s agonizing. One day you’re okay, hopeful, and confident in a positive outcome. The next you can hardly function for the realization that you could lose that person if this doesn’t turn out right.
I regret loving some people. There was this man from the UK that I foolishly loved for years. In fact, up until I met my current significant other, he was the only man that I had ever loved despite my many relationships. He fed me all the lies that I needed at the time, and I happily sat at his table to dine. I gave him all that I had. Each day there were new promises, and each year he fell short of all of them. I regret giving that much of myself to someone who didn’t have the heart to appreciate it. I hate that even during my relationships after him, that I still longed for him. He was a ruler, standard, target, and every man I met had to be measured. It was so incredibly ridiculous, and all it did was drive me further down into a deep depression that I only came out of three years ago. It took me a very long time to recover emotionally, but it has served as a crucial lesson for me and the people around me at the time. I suppose my greatest comfort is knowing that others saw what I had been through, and made better decisions because of it. If you’ve ever heard the song Coconut Skins by Damien Rice, it pretty much sums up that time in my life entirely.
Although, specifically the lines:
Oh you can hold her eggs
But your basket has a hole
You can lie between her legs and go looking for
Tell her you’re searching for her soul
Well, I feel that I have sufficiently bared my soul for the moment. If you have an rawness that you’d like to share with me, I promise not to tell. 🙂 You can privately email me your thoughts, or you can do so here under an Anonymous name. I hope I haven’t depressed you too much.
Warning: I’ve gone twenty-four hours without sleep. So, this post is probably going to be horrid in terms of grammar and typos.