We cannot have our time again; once one hour is up it’s gone for good. Once one life is up, or one period where change is now irreversible, we cannot go back, but we may still have regrets. We may have come to regret what we did or didn’t do. We may seriously want our time over no matter how nonsensical that thinking seems.
But regrets are such a wasted irony in the midst of grief. They consume us in even more depressing qualities of grief, and, because we can’t do anything about them, the sinkhole of regretful turmoil threatens. Down the gurgler we can go.
The only logical thing to do with our regrets in grief is learn how to let go of them.
But that, of itself, is the conundrum that sends us into much fatigue of thinking and emotion. Letting go is not a simple as it seems.
Taking Note Of Enduring Facts
All we can do in our grief is come back to the same knowledge, again and again and again. With time we can be healed.
In this case, our regrets are understandable for what we know now; that which we did not know back then—not in the ways we know now. As we all know, hindsight is a wonderful thing. But we cannot hold ourselves to account for every possible action we could have done. It is not reasonable on ourselves to do that.
The logic of these enduring facts—that mistakes were made, are made, and will always be made—and that we cannot do everything we think is a good idea from retrospect—compels us to forgive ourselves. In forgiving ourselves, having taken counsel of the facts, that certain things in life are beyond us, we are able to let go.
But letting go, again, is not as simple as it sounds. It is very much a process fortified by repetition. Letting go becomes easier with ongoing, tenacious practice.
Tenacity Helps Us In The Letting Go
Persistence will always pay. When we are tenacious in our practice of letting go, doing it consistently, we will ultimately master it. As we practice self-forgiveness for the logic of letting go we are granted the gradual release from these regrets.
We have to have faith that whatever we work hard at in life works for us in the end.
If we are persistent in our self-forgiveness we will eventually feel free of the burden of these regrets.
Regrets are normal in life. But they seem worse when we can’t make them right; when it’s too late. Understanding that we would have done what we regret now, had we known what we know now back then, helps us forgive ourselves. As we forgive ourselves we practice letting go and we become freer. Soon enough the regret becomes history.
© 2012 S. J. Wickham.