Regrets_Creative Non-Fiction

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is a creative non-fiction essay I wrote for my English class.

Submitted: December 05, 2011

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Submitted: December 05, 2011

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Regrets

Have you ever gone through a tragic event in your life and at the end of it all, you were left full of regret? It was Saturday, August 27, 2011 when I got the phone call that shook my entire being and left me lost in thoughts of what I should have done or why I hadn’t.Unfortunately, these thoughts were irrelevant by the time they came to fruition. 

I had not spoken to Adam or his family in nearly two years.  This does not mean that he never crossed my mind.  We had been in a relationship for almost three years before I decided to leave.  The split was not entirely amicable, and I was forced to cut off all contact with him.  I still cared deeply for both Adam and his son Aiden, who was 4 when I last saw him.

I contemplated not picking up the phone at first.  I was in a hurry to meet some friends and couldn’t imagine why my ex-boyfriend Adam’s sister-in-law, Kerri, would be calling, but a part of me knew that something must be wrong.  I never expected for it to be as deplorable as what I was told in the next few minutes.  I pressed the ‘accept’ button on my phone and was met by the sound of crying on the other end.  Kerri could hardly get the words out.  In between sobs and deep breaths, I was able to piece together the words, “Adam’s gone”.  I couldn’t accept it; I refused to accept what I thought I was being told.  I did my best to calm her down, to get her to explain further. I held on to the hope that I had just heard her wrong.  I was quickly let down by the news that Adam had passed away two nights before in an ATV accident, at just 30 years old.

Hours went by before I felt anything but shock.  As I absorbed the news, I began to slip away from reality.  I couldn’t focus on anything or hold a single thought in my mind before being interrupted with the vision of Adam.  All I could hear was his voice and his laughter; I could feel him hugging me. 

For days I walked around like a zombie and filled the nights with sobbing.  I found myself wondering what his thoughts were in those last minutes, as he lay waiting on Flight for Life.  Was he scared?  Did he know he wasn’t going to be ok?  Did he know he was never going to see his son again?  I’ll never know what he was thinking, but the incident certainly made me question my own choices. 

Every couple of months since the split, Adam sent me e-mails, texting and calling until I had changed my phone number.  In his emails over the past year, there was no more anger or obvious pain. They were just a friendly hello, I still miss you, and I love you and hope you’re well.  Part of me thought I should respond, that enough time has passed and I would like to wish him well.  I pondered those thoughts too long and missed my chance.  Until attending his funeral the following Friday, I had no idea just how much I still meant to him, and my heart broke knowing that I would never be able to tell him that he still meant so much to me too. 

I can’t help but wonder if he had not died, would I have ever said something to him?  Would I look back years from now and regret never speaking with Adam again if I knew he was still around, or do I just regret it now because I can no longer make that choice?  Regardless of what I would have done, I cannot go back and it has broken a little part of me that I can never get back.

Regret is swirling mix of remorse and guilt. With all the temptations and obstacles that life throws at us, we are all bound to experience regret in some way.  All we can do is make the best choices for ourselves while we still have options.  My mother has always told me that if you learn from your mistakes and you don’t repeat them, than it is a life lesson, not a mistake.  I’m taking this experience as a life lesson.  Losing someone you love, or even, had loved, is the hardest thing we ever face.


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