When old age sets in and I am nearing the end of my time on this earth, I know I will have regrets. I am human. But, I will also know that I tried as best I could to lead an honest life. To touch the lives of both stranger and friend. That those I loved - knew it with all their heart and those I had lost along the way would always
know that I had a special place in my heart reserved just for them.
I had loved. I had lost. But in the end - I won't regret one single second of it.
We are told to never miss opportunity. To never miss a chance, a possibility or leap of faith. That we must live our lives to the fullest so that when we reach the end we have no regrets. We must live and love. We must reach out and touch others. We must go on adventures and try things that scare us. We must open new doors when one closes and reach for the moon - so that if we miss we shall land among the stars. We must do good whenever the need is there and never miss the chance do to more. The fear of not getting to everything we want, not seeing-doing-feeling every single possible thing life has in store for us, the fuel to keep us going. When our time comes to leave this world - we must do it free of regret.
I know that I have done a lot of things right in life. I also know that I have done a lot of things wrong. I have missed opportunities. I have missed chances. I already have regrets. Some I can do something about and others - I can't. I regret not going to college right out of high school. I regret not being able to help everyone I have wanted to. I regret not trying harder in certain situations. I regret not letting go sooner in others. I regret not following my instincts at some very key points in life. However, one thing I regret the most is all the times my words failed. Words spoken for sure, but more so, those I let die upon my tongue.
I regret words left unspoken.
As a writer you would think I would have always held a solid grasp of the power of my words and honestly, I do, but yet when I look back over the course of my life - I see many times when my words failed. Sure, words spoken in anger are always what come to mind first and foremost. Words, which the second they leave your mouth, you regret. I may have a few of these moments. Or words you spoke that were not completely the truth but were what you thought you needed to say at the time. Like the time I told my grandmother how amazing her green bean casserole was - it wasn't. However, she cooked it a bunch of times after that first time because she thought I loved it. In hindsight, I should have been more honest. Nicely of course, but truthful nonetheless.
Words hold so much power.
The power to leave your mind through your mouth and enter the ears of someone who so desperately needs to hear them. The power to right a wrong. The power to heal. The power of all that is you- within them as they touch the heart of another. It is these words that I regret not uttering sometimes. When instead of telling someone I cared about how much I loved them, how much I needed them, I let the words wither and die on my tongue. The times when I should have said the words they needed to hear and put my own fear aside. Times when the power of my word was the only thing I had to offer and yet, never did. I regret the moments when I have allowed my words to stay trapped, repeating them to myself only, over-and-over again, instead of standing on the closest soapbox and making a sweeping declaration for all to hear.
I regret those times when my words were needed to stand up for something I believed in but I didn't believe in myself enough to say them. Those times when instead of using courage to bolster my words, I let fear quell them. Times when I let people walk away without ever knowing how I felt or when I walked away leaving my words trapped in my throat. All the things I should have said but never did. All the times I should have fought harder or spoke with my heart but didn't. I regret those.
What I don't regret is learning to see the beauty of always speaking my heart. I don't regret telling my friends how much I love them or my younger sister how proud I am of her. I don't regret learning to say things that need saying without fear of being vulnerable. I may regret all the times in the past but I will not have the same regrets in the future.
Life is simply too short. Stop holding on to words that need to be spoken. Stop allowing yourself to let them stay trapped in your mind. If you have the chance - take it. Be honest with those you care about. Good or bad. Speak the words of your soul. Those words are the spark of your very existence. Speak them now or forever hold your peace. Though in my experience - that peace is elusive and the regret of not opening your mouth - holds strong.
When old age sets in and I am nearing the end of my time on this earth, I know I will have regrets. I am human. But, I will also know that I tried as best I could to lead an honest life. To touch the lives of both stranger and friend. That those I loved - knew it with all their heart and those I had lost along the way would always know that I had a special place in my heart reserved just for them. I had loved. I had lost. But in the end - I won't regret one single second of it.
That is the one regret I shall never have - living this amazing life.
Does someone need to hear your words?
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