I wonder if anyone else has the same kind of mental reaction when they ask themselves “what if?” For me, the answer to that question usually centers around things I enjoy having in my life, and how they wouldn’t have happened.
Without going into too much detail on the questions, I can give you a few example of “what if?” answers:
A: Hubs and I would both be working our tails off at crap jobs, scraping the bottom of the barrel week after week. The prospect of buying a house would be a joke.
A: Still wouldn’t have met my brother-in-law and baby niece. Also wouldn’t have a machine that can haul several medium-sized animals and a whole week’s worth of camping gear. Also got to see my mom for a week, which was a saving grace at the start of this adventure.
A: I would be all alone, confined to an apartment, with no real friends to support and encourage me after sleepless nights and cholic-y cries. And I would lack the shared experience that changed one relationship from casual friendship into more of that support thing I was just talking about.
You get the picture. These kinds of answers come to me of their own accord, which makes them that much more effective in assuring me that we made the right decision, or things happen for a reason, or “all things work together for good…”
So at the end of the day, there are two essential elements when entertaining “what if?” scenarios, and trying to decide whether to look back with regret or fondness. They are as follows:
- Did good things come exclusively from that event? (That is, are there good things in my life that never would have happened, had events transpired differently?)
- Does it (or will it) make a good story?
If the answer to both of those questions is yes, I consider it a win and move on. And try to tell the story as many times as humanly possible.
PS: Good luck and God Bless to Zee, who is heading off into the wild blue yonder tomorrow. Keep her in your thoughts and prayers.