I’ve never been one to say that I live with no regrets. Some people say this proudly, as if it’s an achievement that they are so far in denial about the accomplishments they could have made, but did not. There is room for editing in all aspects of life.
I would give a lot for access to a time machine. The $31 in my checking account, the half bottle of Stoli in my freezer or even what little real rubies I own. Clearly I don’t have much to offer for a time-machine dowry, but nonetheless I’m sure an IOU is acceptable.
While the more minor mistakes aren’t necessarily regrets — intoxicated confessions or late-night cookies — there are other times in my life, especially during college, that I’m kicking myself in the ass for not giving my complete energy.
I do wish I had locked myself in the library for hours on end practicing ancient languages or polished my writing even more. If I had gone to the gym religiously and avoided carbs, I’d even have my wonderful body back and finally feel like myself again. Yes, a time machine back to June of 2010 seems like a fantastic idea. Can I buy one on Amazon?
It’s difficult to be mindful of things we take for granted, things that we might regret in the future if they are not fulfilled now. I always try to be kind, or at least courteous, to everyone, and to not get into petty, yet destructive arguments with friends and family members.
But sometimes I think if I had tried much harder and lived without distractions (aren’t friends the worst?), maybe I could have been a Rhodes Scholar and not just a mediocre columnist whom nobody reads.
If I went back to London, in retrospect I would have explored, drank and learned exponentially more than I did last summer (which was a lot!), but if I were transported back, I’d probably fall into my same habits.
So there are many, many regrets.
And it’s a weak excuse to always use the adage that everything happens for a reason, or that God has a greater plan. That’s just justification for past laziness and failure to take initiative.
But when disappointments become less disappointing, your goals are truly crushed. Once you become indifferent to any kind of goal means that something is fading inside of you.
At the risk of sounding like a book from a self-help section from Barnes & Noble, I’ll move on.
If anyone in the Engineering department wants to help me make this time machine, I’d be happy to offer as much insight as possible with relation to classical scholarship. So basically nothing. But I’ll buy you a beer at Cornwall’s or something.
Until then, I’ll just work on getting more assets.
Sydney L. Shea is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.