This week has been filled with the influences and impacts of my interactions with people. Over the weekend, we had a Memorial Day picnic. Our home was full of family and friends. Additional interactions this week came from people living life and struggling through the day to day just like me. Sprinkled in amongst these conversations, I repeatedly heard the phrase, “well, you know, hindsight being 20/20”.
Is hindsight really 20/20 and if it is, would we do things differently?
Decisions good or bad, make up the fiber of our lives and who we are and who we will become. So many similar quotes have been said from this simple idea:
“Youth is wasted on the young.”
― George Bernard Shaw
“It takes a very long time to become young.”
― Pablo Picasso
“It has been a mistake living my life in the past. One cannot ride a horse backwards and still hold its reins.”
― Richard Paul Evans
“If I knew then what I know now.”
We wouldn’t be here, as we are, without those experiences and decisions. Sometimes I look back and perhaps accepting a cheesecake as payment for my typing skills baked by a guy named Pitcher who cleaned his floor by running the dishwasher and opening the door was not my smartest move. Hmm. hindsight being 20/20…
Going down the Alpine Slide at Bromley Mountain at seven months pregnant. Hmm. hindsight being 20/20… (and you wonder where Jack came from)
Lying to the gate agent at USAIR telling her, “Of course I can fly, I’m not due until October”, when in fact I was due in less than 4 weeks. Hmm. hindsight being 20/20…
Okay, granted, I am only choosing entertaining examples. We all have said, done or decided on things that looking back, were most likely not our best work. None the less, they may have been the best decisions at the time. We cannot beat ourselves up. I am standing at the precipice of a cliff, letting go as a mother. My children have jumped and are on their way. They too will make decisions, good and bad but it will be their decisions and I cannot sway them. I can strongly advise and perhaps exert a little Italian Mother guilt, but they are awesome and they will be just fine. Trust me Amelia and Jack, you will be.
Everything else, well, these decisions and actions account for the laugh lines around my smile and perhaps for the frown lines on my forehead. I’m ok with that. Quiet time though, is not good for me. I reflect too deeply and too critically, even on a spin bike, in the dark, with music blaring and people heavy breathing all around me. The instructors may not realize the words they say, or how they say it, but their timing is usually very good. They do not know each one of us or the troubles we may be carrying but they certainly do lead and encourage and I thank them for that.
Chip, well that poor guy is in it with me for the long haul. It’s been thirty-one years since that fateful first date and I truly do love him and thank him for the family and life that we share. Hmm. Hindsight is a crystal clear 20/20.