“If I could go back.” Those five words are the beginning of an ourpouring of wishes and wants of what was, or could have been for us. In the past days I have had numerous conversations with friends on growing up. I think it was even last weekend that I stayed up all night talking with my sister about childhood memories. Even through all the tough times, the mistakes, the failures and the wins, I would never want to repeat or change what has happened.
Today I heard quite a few people say how if Whitney Houston had never married Bobby Brown that she would never be dead. I disagree. I think Whitney had some of the best times of her life, including the birth of her daughter, Bobbi. She would never change a thing, even her death, if it meant giving up her daughter and all the countless good things that came her way since.
I think we can all agree that tragedy is tragic and that failure is no fun at all. But out of all the chaos and hardships is forged a solid man and woman. We do not become who we are without some scars. How can we learn if we cannot learn the consequences to our actions? What would be the good if we could go back and white-out all the bad and replace it with the ideal?
My advice is to look forward and look up. In the Patriot, Mel Gibson’s character, Benjamin Martin, did not just walk through the whole movie and kill Colonel Tavington. Instead, we see the brutal atrocities committed to him and his family that shaped the character and strength that allowed him to fight to the finish and rescue his family. That is what I want. I would never change a thing. I want to be able to learn the hard lessons and be able to teach them to my children and their children so that the generations to come do not repeat the same mistakes.
Can you imagine a world with a decreasing divorce rate or a debt-free America? History does not have to repeat itself. Don’t be afraid to look back at your past, but never let it haunt you. Don’t expect your children to not have their own faults and failures. Regardless of what all you tell them, they too will have to discover consequences and achievements on their own. What matters is how solid the foundation you have laid for them. Start now. Walk foward. Live and learn.