Yesterday’s Thoughts

January 3, 2006

Permanence and Regrets

The holidays are over. Happy New Year to everyone.

Our holidays were interesting on a number of fronts. I took a great number of pictures which I’ll try to put up on flickr soon.

My oldest daughter has recently acquired a number of tattoos. Over the holidays these were brought up a few times, always with the obligatory, “You’ll regret them when you get older.” Her response was pretty neutral, “That’s what everybody says.”

I wonder though, is a tattoo the sort of thing that one necessarily regrets? It certainly does seem like if you are the sort of person to regret aspects of your life, particularly your youth, that a tattoo would be an easy focus of your regret. But how common is regret anyway?

With a blog named “Yesterday’s Thoughts” you can assume that I’m familiar with melancholy, but I don’t really regret many of my actions. Obviously there I things that I would do another way if I had a chance, and people that I have harmed that I wish I hadn’t harmed, but overall I am the sum of my experiences. I can say without arrogance that I’m happy about that.

In fact, the things I regret the most are my inactions. Those chances for experience that I declined, because of fear, laziness or complacency, stick with me today and for every act I’d like to undo in my life, there are a hundred acts I should have done.

I have to compliment my daughter on keeping those people who tell her that she will regret her actions at arms length.

I wish I had.

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