Thursday, January 21, 2016

Never say: "I Wish I Would've..."

The Headlines:

A life full of regret is your choice.

A life full of chances is too!

Here's how to never say, "I wish I would've..."

It's a lot of pressure.  The start of a new year.  There are things you need to do.  Things you have to do.  Things in which you are expected to do.  But I ask, what do you WANT to do and what do you wish for?  What is it that you will one day regret that didn't get done?  Do that.

This story begins many many years ago - when I was entering high school.  I was a young child all of 14 years old and I wasn't quite sure what to think about becoming a first time Freshman.  It didn't take long - for others to tell me.  As they spoke of the yester-years, a few people would get this glassy look in their eyes as they talked about their former days of glory.  I would say, however, that most of the people didn't react that way.  Instead, most hesitated and remembered a chance gone by.   A lost moment in time.

Over and over again I heard: when I was in High School I wish I would've... tried out for the school play, gone for school President, took up a sport.  The possibilities of missed chances were endless really.  But here's what happened after hearing it so often: the phrase ended up sticking with me.  I decided, shortly after embarking upon the 4 years ahead  that I would not be the person who wished they would've but didn't.

So, in high school I did everything.  From student government to chorus to mock trial to the loud crowd to going to the Prom

to planning the Prom - the list went on and on.  Yes, even the French Club.  And the talent show.  I mean, really, everything.

At the end of my time in high school, sure I had great transcripts (yes, I did school work too) but more importantly I felt super fulfilled.  I would never look back and think man, I wish I would've... because I did.

This thinking continued in college.  I once again, did it all.

Cheerleading, internships, on-campus office manager, acting... a little less than high school because classes became more of a priority.  But by the time I left that higher learning institution I too felt like I used my time as best as I could while I was there.  It was at this point, on the brink of starting on a career in journalism that I realized my small life lesson was gaining serious and valuable ground without me even noticing.  That the phrase I used to define my high school career began to define my entire life.

Now don't get me wrong, just because you wish it to come true... doesn't mean it will. You have to put in the hard work, time, mix it with some determination and shake it with a dose of luck but if you try and maybe fall short or even fail then you still no longer wish you would've... because you did.    Not to mention, that "failure" probably took you down a road you never dreamed you'd be on.  Maybe even a better one.

This rationale still drives me today.  At one point in my career, I wanted to be a Katie Couric or a Diane Sawyer on the national Morning News.  But as I continued in TV News, I made a conscious decision not to do that.  I came to realize my own story was more important to me than the ones I was telling.  If I wouldn't have quit journalism, sooner than later, I'm positive I would have thought: I wish I would've been a stay at home Mom.  I talked about it a long time ago, for the first time, in a blog post called Super Sick Mom and then again last year in one called 5 Reasons to Stay-at-Home when Kids are Older vs. when they're Babies.

In fact, my school of thought is part of the reason I now do almost everything.

It's why I take the time to do what I love, like decorating... read 5 Easy Projects to Make a House a Home  HERE and Do-it-Yourself Projects like my Dream Closet or all the remodeling we've done: our White Bathroom or see the Before & After photos of our White Kitchen.

It's also why I learned to cook (a little)... see this Sweet/Salty Salmon Dish HERE.  I even bake, occasionally, these Caramel Brownies melt in your mouth (& took 5 minutes to do)!

I wish I would've helped me find the Right One... rather than letting him slip by for the "right now" one... it made me work harder than ever to have my second child during my Fight For Fertility and then reminds me to not take them for granted when they're driving me nuts because Mother's Day is everyday - even though we forget that sometimes.

I wish I would've makes me want to put on special parties like this Police Birthday Party for my son or a WINE TASTING for my friends!  It helps me stay in shape with these 5 Simple Weight Loss Tips and keep myself up even when the HONEYMOON is over!  It also drives me work hard to be the Best Mom possible even if it makes me the Meanest Mom in the Room!

The school of thought taught me to say things that others leave un-said.  To let people know how important they are to me.  I wrote about it HERE, in a frightening case of fore-shadowing, just before my Dad had a very close call with a brain aneurysm.

Finally, it's why I started this blog.  I wanted to put things down in one place.  Maybe only 10 people are reading it but I know it's there... and one day my kids will too.

In the end, I guess what I'm saying boils down to this simple example: if you love the game of football you don't have to become a professional football player.  But you do owe it to yourself to try out for the team.  If you don't make it you must watch the game, read about the game and maybe one day coach the game.  Or just work at the stadium in which the game is played.  It's then and only then, you'll never say I wish I would've... because you did.

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