A Lifetime of Rewrites

Day 18 of the #PNIWritingChallenge asks:

Have you mentally re-written an event in your life to make the outcome better?

This is something I believe 90% of the people in this world do. And yes, 73% of all statistics on the Internet are made up – I read that on the Internet so it must be true. And I’m a French model …

We’ve all done it, I’m sure. Had the heated discussion with a co-worker, family member, or friend, and later that night while taking a shower or cooking dinner we can come up with 10 different lines or arguments that may have gotten our point across better, or at least let us potentially come out ahead in the heated discussion.

It’s human nature.

I, like so many others, spend a lot of time protecting my fragile little ego. Until I don’t.

I do not actually believe it’s fragile or little, that’s a borrowed line from a Henry Rollins spoken word show that I hear all the time when my brain isn’t listening to other things.

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Henry is my spirit animal, or guide, or something … you should check out his spoken word some time.

“If I could have said this, it would have shut them down and I’d be cock of the walk, but I didn’t because I’m a nice person … (who also didn’t think to say this until four hours later).”

“No one ever has to know that I did whatever embarrassing thing that my friends didn’t see last night, because they didn’t see it, so they’ll believe me when I tell them the dude/chick was really into me until their friends showed up and dragged them out of the bar before I could get/give the digits and not how I punched the guy/girl in the face accidentally while dancing…”

I am Queen of the Snappy Comebacks when I’m in the mood, which I haven’t been lately. Nor have I had heated discussions or events that I felt needed new outcomes. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I actually rewrote events, or at least wrote new dialogue for something that actually happened. 2010 comes to mind. Ugh, that seems like it was eons ago.

The things in my past that could, maybe even should, be rewritten won’t be. If it weren’t for those events and their outcomes, I would not be the person that I am today, and I honestly love that person.

After the niblings were born, I made a vow to myself and whoever was listening at the time that I would not lie to my nieces or nephew about anything they asked me. Ever. Whether it was about my life, their parents, the world, whatever, if they asked a question I would answer it honestly if I knew the answer, and I would hunt down the answers if I didn’t.

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Thank goodness they haven’t asked me about Santa or the Easter Bunny, not officially. My nephew came close once. He was worried about Santa and the Easter Bunny coming into his house when everyone was asleep. The kid has a brain that works somewhat like mine and he immediately assumed that, even though they are on the side of good, there’s little stopping them from doing something bad.

“What do they do in here when I’m asleep? Will you sleep on the couch to make sure they don’t do anything bad? Can we set a trap?”

“They don’t do much, kiddo, and yes, I’ll sleep on the couch so I can keep an eye on them, just in case. Wait, you want to set a trap for Santa? My kind of kid … ”

I vowed to do my best to let them come to their own conclusions instead of trying to feed them mine. It’s interesting to watch how their minds work.

I wouldn’t have thought that the vows would be hard to follow, and technically they have’t been. They don’t ask really hard questions yet, though I’m waiting. The worst it’s been so far is one niece asking why my teeth are “dirty”.

“That’s what they look like when you haven’t taken care of them,” says Aunt AK. “That’s why you should brush them three times a day with good toothpaste.” And lo and behold, the kids go brush their teeth.

Why would I want to rewrite life if I can use my experiences to help others, but especially my little nugget niblings?

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