196/365

Friday, December 28, 2012

I've been thinking a little bit about doubt and regret these past few days. The strangeness of being at home. I had a thought tonight and it makes sense to me.

Maybe doubt, and regret, is the feeling of grief for all the possibilities you didn't choose. Maybe that ache in your stomach, those pangs that come and go quickly and mostly without notice, is just your way of grieving for all of the ways your life could have gone. All of the parallel universes out there, where you made a different choice and became a different person.

It was on my mind yesterday, (day 196) and I was driving home after seeing an old friend. Driving in the dark, listening to the radio station I listened to in high school, driving the same highways I've driven my whole life, the exit ramps perfectly ingrained, second nature. I felt this huge sense of nostalgia. (I don't even know if nostalgia is really the right word for it.) This overwhelming doubt, like somewhere really far back I had chosen right instead of left and I had no idea where the other turn would have taken me. And I felt that sense of grief, for wherever that road would have taken me.

This is not a post about my unhappiness. It's about that ever irksome question, "What if?" which will always linger in the back of my mind like a ghost. It's a question that doesn't come up often, for me. I am happy and busy and proud of the life I've built. Whatever doubts I have are few and fleeting.

But there will still be that ghost question sometimes. I don't think many people on the internet talk about it. We're all so busy trying to make our lives look appealing. Posting pictures to Facebook. Updating our statuses. Posting blogs, that are filled to the brim with happiness.

But still I am an average person, and my doubts leak into the little cracks that grow, and I do my best to push them out and have faith in myself. That's what this is about.

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