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A Life Without Regrets?

Looking for The Lactivist? She's retired. But you CAN still find Jen blogging. These days, she's runs A Flexible Life. Join her for life, recipes, projects and the occasional rant.

Monday, May 14, 2007

Mercedes Lackey said: "If only. Those must be the two saddest words in the world."

My new "bff" Wendy Piersall over at eMoms at Home has tagged me in the "What do we wish we had been more serious about in life?" meme that's floating around.

While she did come up with a few things, Wendy's first thoughts are a reflection of my own:

Quite honestly, it's hard to regret any of my mistakes anymore - because I'm pretty dang happy with where I am today.

I'm not a terribly serious person. In fact, one of the biggest criticisms that people sometimes have of me is how rarely I take things seriously. (I mean come on, I'm the person that delivered a marketing speech to a room of several hundred people while wearing a "Milk Jugs" shirt.) I tend to float around from idea to idea and my friends often roll their eyes when I stumble into my latest obsession.

On the other hand, the things that I do take seriously stick and stick HARD. My faith, my family, my friends...I take those things very seriously.

So Wendy's question sparked a bit of thought and I wondered what it was that I should be taking more seriously because hey, life isn't over yet. Why "wish" when I can change?

My Health

If you've followed any of my projects online, you know that I'm a bit...umm...type A? I'm not really a sit around and let stuff happen kind of person, I'm a run into the room with both arms in the air screaming kind of person. The funny thing is that for the last decade, all of my energy has been exercised mentally.

That means I've not done so much exercising with my body. In fact, during my four years of college I gained about 60 pounds. Poor eating, lots of late nights working on the computer and a total lack of exercise left me with an energetic mind trapped in a sluggish body. It's been a constant battle, but in the six years since I've gotten married, I've managed to shed forty pounds. (Leaving just 20 more to go.)

Since Emmitt has been born I've done a lot of work to move back toward more healthy eating. We eat about 50% organics now and I'd guesstimate that less than 15% of our food is "packaged." In fact, most of the packaged food is cereal or crackers. In other words, I do a lot more cooking these days. Add in a renewed commitment to getting my 30 minutes of exercise each day and I hope to have this last twenty pounds off by the end of the year.

My Faith

It's no secret that I'm a conservative Christian and that my faith guides my daily activities. I've been a Christian since I was in junior high and have always been active in my church, in local missions work and in Bible studies. My goal is to live my life as an example of what Christianity is all about rather than running around telling everyone why they need to "get saved."

I figure if I'm living my faith the way that I should, people will notice that something is different about me and that if I'm open and approachable, they'll ask if they have questions.

Unfortunately, since having children, my walk with Christ has been complicated. Finding time alone to pray, read devotions and meditate is difficult. (I mean geeze, I can't even go to the bathroom without at least one child or dog following me, how am I supposed to sit down and pray.) I also have a policy of not leaving my children in the church nursery until they're mobile which means that this past weekend was the second time I'd sat through a full church service in nearly eight months. (The other time mom held him and he fell asleep.)

Finding time to reconnect with a Bible study group and to work daily devotions back into my day would go a long way toward helping me put that regret behind me.

That's It!

Quite honestly, those were the only two things I could think of. That's not to say that I've made perfect decisions through my entire life, but I can't really think of any that I actually regret.

Sure, I could say that I regret not trying harder when nursing Elnora, but if I hadn't ended up pumping I never would have found the milk bank, started this blog or gotten involved in lactivism.

I could say that I regret not working harder in college but I've built my career based on experience, so who really cares?

Things all seem to work themselves out in the end.

For instance...

I've had heartbreaking ends to relationships, but have then ended up blessed with even better ones down the road.

I've lost jobs, quit jobs and even been fired from jobs, but I've always ended up liking the next one even better.

I've always made sure that my friends and family know how much I love and appreciate them. In fact, losing my grandmother a few months back was made so much easier by knowing that I'd taken the time to write her a heartfelt letter several years ago to tell her what an impact she'd had on my life.

If only?

I don't think I have any "if only" moments...

...unless you count "if only that lotto ticket had been a winner" but even then...I have everything I need. Being rich would only complicate things. :)

With all of that said, I tag Abigail, Jennifer, Sinead and Judy.


  1. Anonymous Wendy Piersall | 1:16 PM |  

    What a GREAT post, Jennifer! and it is just sooooo cool to get to know you better through this kind of stuff! HUGS to you! :D

  2. Blogger Oivey Ivey! | 2:14 PM |  

    Reading your latest post, the quote came to mind. Thought you might appreciate it.

    "It is our responsibilities, not ourselves, that we should take seriously." --Peter Ustinov (1921-2004)

  3. Blogger Jennifer | 2:17 PM |  

    Ooooooooooooooooooooooooooh...I LIKE that!

  4. Blogger JudyBright | 8:06 PM |  

    You know I didn't even have to click on "latest obsession" to know what you were talking about.

    I'm an eye roller; it's a reflex. I can't help it. (although you haven't seen me since the new obsession began)

    Don't take it personal :-)

    Also, I'll make a blog post, but it will be friends locked. I'll let you know when it's done.

    One more sidenote that you have no control over: Why does the word verification time out after like 2 seconds. 'tis annoying

  5. Blogger tiny-dog | 9:26 PM |  

    How cool are the bentos? What a neat idea.

  6. Blogger Jennifer | 5:26 AM |  

    So much fun.

    Yes, it qualifies as an obsession, but like about 50% of my "obsessions" I think this one will last in some form. It just ties in so well with the healthy eating goals.

    Anyway, off to work up a post on this topic. :)

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