Sunday, April 13, 2014

No Regrets

"The road this past year has not been an easy one, but you can stand back and take a look at how far you have come and be very proud of yourself.  I have watched you as you faced up to adversity and started to take charge of your life, and I am very proud of you.  When I say, "I love you," it doesn't begin to express how much I do truly care for you, worry about you, and take pride in the things you do."
Daddy 1996
These last few weeks I have been trying to clean up loose ends and organize the house.  The bathroom is done!  I love it!  It came out better then we could have hoped and we thank everyone involved.

I didn't knit this week or last week for that matter.

I wrote up a pattern and a class and then had to rest because my eye strain was horrible.

Then I worked on taxes with my DH.  We've got that down to a science now more or less and it only took a few hours.  I just need to double check it again and then I can cross that off my rather long list.

The ice did a number on our chimney so that is in the process of being fixed.  At least it isn't leaking water right now.  The yard will finally get cleaned up this weekend while we take advantage of the sunshine.  It looks like a war zone with all the branches down from the storm.  Yeah, I know that storm was months ago but this week is the first week we've had sun and not rain or snow for such a long time.  It is hard to believe that it snowed two weeks ago.  But spring is finally here.

I made my Dr. appointments.  No cavities for me or my son and my eyes get checked again next week.

But mostly these last few weeks I've been dealing with "me".

This is the first year without Mom or Dad and I really missed Dad not singing to me on my birthday or Mom calling me at 1:04 PM (the time she delivered me) to wish me a beautiful day...and for some reason it hit me rather hard that they were gone.  And that must sound kinda silly since it has been a year and all...two for Dad...but to me it was like some revelation.

If I tell you I talk to my parents all the time you might say, "Well that is normal and good and all."  But if I told you that they talk back you might think I'm a bit nuts.  But regardless of what you think, I have heard my Mother say over and over to me, "No regrets."

My Mother worried about everything.

I used to worry that I was a failure and that my parents would never be proud of me.  As usual these things are based on a kernel of truth that has been magnified by our thoughts until we believe that truth, when in fact it may or may not be true at all.

Let's face it I was not my sister.  I lost homework on a regular basis and missed stuff on the board all the time because I hated wearing my glasses and being called four-eyes.  There were times I would skip school to bask in the sun at Great Falls but I didn't skip a lot.  I lied to cover my tracks and got so lost in my lies that I didn't know what my truth was.  I liked to party when I finally got some friends and made some bad choices there.  And that was High School.

My sister was a straight-A honor roll student who was like day to my night.  I was always comparing myself to her because I thought that's what my Dad wanted of me.

I moved out of the house too soon and had money troubles for about 10 years while my sister saved and was again the "responsible one" my father wanted me to aspire to be.

Please don't get me wrong.  I have always admired my sister for her accomplishments and would brag to my friends how amazing she was and is.  I love my sister and I always have.  This was never about her it was about me.

I was a hot mess and most if not everything Dad said was true and if I could go back in time with the knowledge I have now I would have "buckled down" and done my homework and really tried harder this time.  But I can't go back, only forward.  And years later I would get my ND after much grueling homework, study and a thesis I was really proud of, with straight As all across the board.  And you know what?  My Father was so proud of me but I didn't see it.  I was still that struggling teenager trying to make my Daddy proud and I couldn't see that he was.

Through the years as I got married and had a child he would tell me over and over how proud Mom and him were of me but it just didn't register.

But this week as I reread a letter that he left in my personal file that he never sent me and I finally got it.  I'm not that teenager anymore.  I am responsible, organized, compassionate and a bunch of other things.  I turned all that money trouble around and I am now living commercial debt - except for the house - free.  I have been saving for my son since the day he was born.

I'm not judging my life by holding it up to my sister's or anyone else for that matter.  My husband and I built our lives on love and we never much cared about money as long as we had each other and enough to get by it was fine.  We have both grown as individuals as much as we have grown closer together and to me that is what being prosperous truly is.

What I realized this week is that my parents were proud of the person that I have become.  They have always been proud of me and it was my clouded view of myself that made it seem otherwise.  I know they always loved me and wanted what was best for me.  I know that even in darkest hours they were always there for me.

The last thing I said to both my parents was, "I love you."

I have no regrets.  They knew I loved them and I know they loved me.  Just as I know that I can't go back in time and change who I was except by being a better person in the "now".

No regrets.

But I miss them fiercely, which is how things should be.

Hug your loved ones for me,