Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Je ne regret rien

I've heard it said that if you have no regrets then you haven't learned from your mistakes. But I would beg to differ. I have no regrets because despite it all--the good, the bad, the ugly--I have learned something. I've learned a lot.

I've lived big, played hard, laughed out loud, and ugly cried. I've hurt and been hurt. I've been incredible places, acquired unbelievable stories, tested my moral fiber, and been rocked to core. I've said what I meant, and followed my heart. Quit jobs, watched tv in my stretchy pants, ate gluten and dairy and fried food and sugar. I've probably drank too much and said incredibly offense things (both sober and...not), but that's all been part of the adventure.

As cliche as it may be, I regret nothing. Not even the Mandarin character I have tramp-stamped on my lower back. My life has molded me and made me who I am. In some cases, like the tattoo, not everyone needed to see the proof (what's up, grandma). But that doesn't make it any less meaningful to me, to my story. And given time, there's a chance that I will permanently emblazon my body with these very words, je ne regret rien, because they mean something to me.

Just this past weekend I found myself sitting at a table enjoying a beer with relative strangers. Wonderful people, each with their own story to tell, and yet they wanted to know mine. They were fascinated by my scars, my adventures, my je ne said quoi. As much as I shy away from the spotlight and do my best to deflect attention, I found myself sharing parts my story with them. Owning it. Being okay with where I am in this moment. And then changing the subject, to them, to anything but me. But in that moment, that scary, attention-holding moment, I put myself out there. Broken bones and all. It probably didn't hurt that I had consumed more than my fair share of Fireball and Rumchatta and champagne prior to this, but I'm choosing not to split hairs. 

Sometimes I wonder how I've ended up where I am. Like I've lived more than someone my age should have. And yet, I haven't lived enough. This is just the start of my story. Hold the fuck on, because I can promise you that this will be one hell of a ride, wherever it may go.

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