I was sitting here letting my thoughts run through all the things I may have regretful feelings for, and there are plenty. A few are things I wish that I had not done, knowing life would have definitely gone differently had I not carried out those actions. I wish looking back, that I had spent more time with my son during his formative years, but he turned out well in spite of my not being here full time. My more recent regret, is not staying that night in the hospital where my brother was. He died early that next morning with no family present.
My biggest regret, is the marriage that ended up teaching me some of my greatest lessons. There is also that, if only. If only, I had stayed on the narrow way, and not strayed onto the wider path. I did it, because in my head, I saw it as my only choice, though it wasn’t. But the thoughts in my head, told me it was. In my head, I was hearing conversations again between people I respected, discussing somewhat where I found myself. Conversations from an era past, but remembered and clung to by the generation that had lived then and clung to old ways and beliefs. Transferred to a youth who had sat listening. Rather than be strong in faith, I allowed the whispers to draw me away. I stepped off the narrow and into hell.
Even as I know, that what I went through, was not as horrendous as what others have, it was still in its own way a nightmare. Because I had made that choice and taken that path away from where I should have remained. There are those who say that we should not take blame for things that happen but there are situations, where if we had made different choices, then obviously the outcome would have been different. In that respect, we are to blame.
For almost two years, I dealt with the results of the choice I made. I should not have. No one, absolutely no one, has a right to mistreat and abuse another. No one, has a right to strike, to verbally abuse, to emotionally abuse, another. But he did, and I stayed. First because I was of a mind, I made my choice, its for better or worse. Right? I just got the worse.
Then the worse did happen, and my deceived, fog cleared brain awakened and I knew I had to escape and escape I did. By the way, its a very long bus ride from Lake Charles, Louisiana, to Charlotte, NC. A lot can go through one’s mind on a journey like that, a lot can be left behind also. The further I got away, the closer I got to home, the more different I could and did feel.
While I learned valuable lessons during that time, lessons of understanding that I value, I also regret the decisions that put me in that position. If I had stayed on the path of righteousness, if I had not strayed off and into the dark, I would have not gone through those dark times. I know though, that even though I had strayed,(that free will thing) I had abandoned my faith, I was never abandoned. Things that happened, that could have been worse, weren’t. My earthly parents were there for me when I needed them, immediately sending a bus ticket to get me home. My Heavenly Father was there with me during that darkness, ready to welcome me back, watching over me at all times.
Do I regret that time? I don’t regret the things I learned. I don’t regret gaining that understanding of domestic abuse. I don’t regret the empathy gained. I don’t regret the event, because in retrospect, it has helped shape me into who I am. That time in my life broke me, God took those broken pieces and put them back together. I wasn’t the same, I was different, better for having been broken because I grew and changed through the broken moments.
What do I regret? The time away. I struggled through that time, trying to do it on my own. I faced each day, trying to do everything myself. I never reached for, never prayed to, never sought, the help and guidance of the One who waited, ready and willing to help me. Strong willed is also sometimes called stubborn. I was stubborn. I got myself into that, I could and would face it and in time if need be, get myself out. I had to be fully broken, to my will and strength. When that happened, I was set free. My regret, that I made it take so long. I know now, where and in Whom, my strength rests. I know now, where to go, when I face dark times, moments of trouble. I understand now, that my strength, is not enough. As long as I remain on the narrow path, as long as my heart and mind remain rooted in my faith, as long as I remain close to the Father, I know I will have no more regrets.