Coulda Woulda Shoulda’s

Coulda Woulda Shouldas

After hearing from a long ago acquaintance recently I got to reminiscing about the past, but even more so about what I had once thought I would make of my future someday. I don’t know about you, but my life has turned out nothing like I’d imagined, so far. I had expected I’d go to university, start a career, fall in love, then think about marriage and children sometime after the age of thirty. Here I am 35, already married and soon(I hope)-to-be-(officially)-divorced, two children (who are almost old enough not to require childcare), never did establish a career path – but rather strolled down many and could never make up my mind… Now I hope to embark on a career (finally), but still feel uncertain, undecided, and to be honest a little inconsequential.

I wonder about my old friends, and so I look back through the old yearbooks, read some of the end-of-year notes, and think: huh!? They all had me pegged… for something entirely different with my life… something that I always will wonder if was my intended path and I was somehow lead astray. Now don’t get me wrong, I know it was ME who chose that path, I certainly don’t blame anyone but myself for leading me there.

Blame. Blame is such a strong, negatively associated word. I don’t wish to mislead you too. I am happy I chose the path(s) that I did. Mostly. I wouldn’t trade my children for a million chances at doing it over. But I do wonder if I should try to fulfill some of those long lost dreams. I wonder how many are better left buried in the dust.

I have always believed that everything happens for a reason, or at least that I should make something of everything that happens in my life. And I know without a doubt that “they” are right when they say: what doesn’t kills us, makes us stronger. So even though I haven’t made it to where I’d like to be, I know that all of those other experiences will help me get wherever it is that I am going.

Where does that leave all of the friends left behind? You know the ones that you never imagined out of your life? The ones you can barely remember where they live today… Is it ever worth trying to go back?

Somedays I have this strange vague feeling that there is a whole part of my life that I started to live, and just suddenly dropped, one day. That I have unfinished business of a huge magnitude, but I can’t for the life of me remember how, where or why. I can see why people come to believe in reincarnation, because this very poignant feeling returns to me frequently and with a vibrancy that just cannot be imagined, and yet I am certain that whatever it is, never really occurred in my current lifetime. Or perhaps if not from a yester-life, it is a precursor of something yet to be?

How often do you experience the Coulda-Woulda-Shoulda’s? And what do you do when you do?