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If I Had My Life to Live Over

By Executive Assistant Shannon Howlett

Is it not a priceless gift when you can learn from the experience of someone who learned the hard way? When I read Erma Bombeck’s, “If I had My Life to Live Over” it struck me as something we can all take a page from.  It goes like this:

“…IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER… I would have talked less and listened more.  I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.  I would have eaten the popcorn in the ‘good’ living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.  I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather ramble about his youth.  I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed. 

“…IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER…I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage.  I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.  I would have cried and laughed less when reading – and more while watching life.  I would have shared more of the responsibility carried by my husband.  I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren’t there for the day. 

“…IF I HAD MY LIFE TO LIVE OVER…I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn’t show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.  Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I’d have cherished every moment and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.  When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, ‘Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.’  There would have been more ‘I love yous’… more ‘I’m sorrys’…  but mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute…look at it and really see it… live it…and never give it back…”

Every day, we all get another chance to do it right or to make things right.  I don’t know about you, but in the end, I don’t want to have regrets or things I wish I’d done differently.  Today is a precious gift.  When you know better, you do better. Breathe.  Let go.  And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure.

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