Saturday, May 16, 2009

More Than Just a Tinge of Regret

The song If I Could Turn Back Time by Cher is getting to be a bit of a golden oldie now, having been originally released by Geffen in June 1989, but it holds a classic truth that resonates with so many of us.

This below, also, could illustrate an entirely regretful situation; the voice of grief:

“Over and over the helpless voice asks ‘Why didn’t I...?’ and sobs ‘If only I’d...’--but you didn’t and it’s too late.”[1]
I know of many people who’ve crashed hard through serious illness and injury, including fatalities, (whether directly of themselves and what it does to loved ones, or in supporting loved ones scourged) and it never ever gets easier. The sense of stinging regret lasts, diminishing gradually, yes, but never entirely.

How many harp on and labour the point of regret of having lost someone close and dear but don’t learn the ongoing lesson to provide for their own and others’ safety and welfare? This, in a sense, is the ‘bargaining’ part of the K├╝bler-Ross Grief model that’s altogether transient. It’s only meaningful for a time.

If I Could Turn Back Time is a song about words, and the harm they can do. Words have a way of wounding, and those wounds do last barring the presence of real forgiveness, which in itself is rare (though it needn’t be).

We all want to turn back time on certain things in life. The process of grief over past hurts, wrongs and tragedies does work itself out, however. A small component of regret in grief, at least, has a use-by date.

We all tend to take our physical and emotional safety for granted, until it’s too late that is. We take many risks at times. Perhaps there’s an opportunity to review the wisdom of life risk management in the light of the activities that we undertake and the relationships we choose to nurture.

Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

[1] Billy Thorpe, Sex and Thugs and Rock ‘n’ Roll (Sydney, Australia: Pan Macmillan Australia, 1996), p. 368.

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