It’s inevitable you will reach some point, some situation, some loss of a loved one where you will think or say, “I wish I would have done more.” Maybe, “I wish I would have done differently.” These thoughts are natural as we are beings with the gift to look forward and backwards. We look back for many reasons. Looking back can be helpful as well as a hindrance.
If we look back to measure how far we have come, that could be good if we rejoice about it. If we look back to see what we can learn from a situation, that is helpful for our present and future. However, it is when we look back and realize that we can’t fix the past and become filled with regret. “We wish we would have done more or differently.” How do you not let that consume you? How do you live with the guilt? I can tell you that you must find a way or it will eat you alive. It will gnaw at your conscious. Here is what I know and I hope it can help you.
Forgive yourself and know that you are forgiven by a Higher Power.
If the person has passed away and you wish you would have done more, made amends, or did differently by them, just know that they forgive you. Amends have been made. There is no “space” in the hereafter to hold grudges and unforgiveness. There is only peace. There is only joy. There is only bliss.
Do differently NOW with the time and the people you have left.
If the person is here now, go to them and ask for forgiveness and CHANGE your ways. The best apology is changed behavior.
If the person will not forgive you, that is on them. You have did your part. Forgive yourself. Continue with changed behavior. And remember, you are forgiven.
My oldest brother passed in February of this year and I can say with ease and peace, there is nothing I wish I would have done more about. We had a great relationship as sister and brother. My godmother transitioned yesterday and I wish I would have given her more. I wish I would given her more on her birthdays and mother’s day. I intended to have her and my god sister over at my new home for dinner soon. I won’t get that chance. I wish I would have made that pineapple upside down cake she suggested I make as I have began baking. What can I do about these things, now? I can’t do much about these things now. I can be grateful for the life she lived and the impact it had on me. I can invite my god sis over. I can give more to my god children. I can bake and perfect the pineapple upside down cake. I can cherish all of the invaluable lessons, that are precious gifts, she gave me. For a woman that went through so much, she not only displayed resilience, she had a joy about life that shined like the sun on a clear blue sky fall day.
I’ll do more now.