Contemplating The What-Ifs

12 04 2008

Jackson Miller wrote this morning about things that got me wondering.

I used to know what my pipe dream was. Until I had kids I held on to the hope that one day I would get the balls to just pack it all up and sail around the world solo on an old 1970’s fiberglass sailboat (they didn’t know how string fiberglass was in the 70s and thus made some boats that are as sturdy as a tank). Once I had kids that dream was no longer a reality.

I love my wife and kids, though I do wonder what life would have been like if I did it. It was within reach if I really wanted it. I don’t have regret per se, but it is a what-if.

I read the post, went and watched some of The Office that I had Tivo’d and then went back to the post again.

I’m in a what-if kinda mood today.

I’m not as open about my feelings on this blog as I used to be. Things have changed a degree and I sometimes get overwhelmed by the fact that a few people actually read it which has come back to haunt me a bit in my non-cyber world. I also have some big fears about trust issues but I find that most people do. The past five years have been an odd mish-mash of hard truths and stepping up the ladder of learning difficult life lessons.

We all go through this. I am not unique.

So what-if is on my mind. What-if I make changes and they don’t work. What-if I take a hard line and it blows up. What-if I do what I want to do and it comes back to haunt me.

Because, like Jackson, I do think about making huge changes. I have taken actions on some of them and then let fear blind me into running back to the starting line. I think of Portland, Oregon, in which I spent several of the happiest days of my life. I think about could I get a job there and live comfortably. I think of East Tennessee and Memphis, where I know I could be more than satisfied if I were to move there. Far away, but not too far. I think of the years I wanted to work in politics, but that now that I’m probably too old and blunt for that sort of life. I think of the east coast, where the idea of being moments from the beach would be such a wonderful thing. I think of the time I was in Amsterdam and how my mind was opened to new and exciting things, or when I was in school in Montreal, Que.

I also think about last night, when I was standing by myself in the wind at the edge of a wet field, devastated by recent rains and lying sadly without the crops that should have been planted three weeks ago, and how my hair flew about my face and how I felt so at peace with everything.

I am not depressed, my friends. I’m middle-aged (although Jackson is far from that) and thinking when it would be best to make a move. A move that would be an adventure. I do not want to wake up at 60-years-old thinking the same things I’m thinking today.

I do not have children, although I do have an overabundance of love in my life, so I realize the only thing stopping me is me.

Part of that ladder we climb I mentioned above. Self-realization is a bitch.

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2 responses

12 04 2008
Finn

Talk about food for thought! I don’t want any regrets now or on down the road, but dang, it’s hard to know just what is the right “move” at the right time sometimes.

13 04 2008
Jackson

I do not want to wake up at 60-years-old thinking the same things I’m thinking today.

There is the rub. The worst decisions may tend to be the ones that we don’t make. I have that with statzen. If I don’t find a way to get it released to the public soon then I will have a really tough what-if to live with.

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