This post is dedicated to a precious friend that is living with sorrows and regrets after losing someone very special..
In those cold moments after someone we love has passed on many of us will face that awful feeling of regret. Regret for moments and things we’ve done and said, not done and said, actions left to late, thoughts had in desperation and fear, time we could have given, words of love and encouragement we wished we’d shared, forgiveness for old wounds, signs we should have noticed and so much more.
That feeling of regret lives inside us and stands before us, renders us helpless to climbing the mountain of grief; facing grief and finding our way through seems to stop at that point, that sorrow; we begin to feel we will never be able to move beyond it, we will never be able to say sorry and do things differently. There, between pain and peace stands that huge elephant in the emotional room. It builds within us as a big black ball of sorrow. We yearn for a rewind, a moment in time where we could go back and do things differently, where we could have understood things more clearly. We are in fact wishing that we could go back and be someone other than who we were, but who we were and are, are human beings with human frailties.
Just like becoming a parent, getting married and many other significant times in our lives, we navigate our way through without a ‘How Too’ manual. There isn’t and has never been a human to walk through this life without regret for something. This is part of the human experience, but regret in all walks of life serves little use. It may at best offer us a new appreciation and understanding but whilst we let it live within us reeking havoc with our emotions and health we can not truly get any benefit.
I’m sure if we had a moment to ask our loved ones if they held our actions or lack of them, against us they would dismiss it without a second thought; they, after all, see the bigger picture, they understand what we couldn’t then and often still don’t see now. Life is for living, for learning, for making mistakes and overcoming. Life is to be loved and cherished and our focus must be on all that was and is good and beautiful.
I’m sure our loved ones would also tell us they too had moments they regretted; moments where they may have felt they let us down, where they weren’t as strong as they could have been, where they didn’t value life and us as much as they should have, where they may have hurt us or disregarded us; but they know that regret is futile, they took those actions when they lived in a human body and had all the limitations we all have, they understand that there was a purpose to their journey as there is to ours, they understand that the only way to over come regret is to live each day purposefully, joyfully and peacefully; letting who we were go and letting who we are now, the person post the passing of our loved one, blossom. To live out our lives that way is to honour not only ourselves but them, to let the focus be on what was good, and if there was no good to focus on, to let the focus be on allowing good in now, this is a gift we can acquire for ourselves and give back to our lives and loved ones here and in spirit.
We can not change what was, but we can change what is. We have a choice, we can let go and give our thoughts of regret up to instead embrace all that was and is positive or we can hold on, churn over and let a moment in time, a thought, a fear, a judgement of who we once were keep living, keep hurting and keep separating us from our lives and our loved ones.
If our departed loved ones could come to us and tell us of their regrets and sorrows, of the things they could have done differently for us and towards us we would most likely find within us the peace and love to say, ‘let it go now.’
Peace starts somewhere, lessons are learnt through mistakes, changes happen through understanding. Each one of us is richer, not poorer for our moments of regret. We have learnt to do things a little differently, we have recognised we are not perfect, if we were we wouldn’t be here, and hopefully we have learnt along our spiritual journey, highlighted to us by our loved ones passing, that everything has its place, its reason and its lesson.
Let regret be gone, focus on all that was and is precious and live life fully, that way you limit any more moments of regret you will undoubtedly feel in the future for the time you are wasting now.