I had lunch with an ex the other day. Afterwards, a friend of mine asked, given the chance to do things again, knowing it wasn’t going to work out and how painful it was going to be at times, would I do it all again? After a short pause the answer I gave was a resounding ‘YES’ and this is why. It’s probably not what you think.
By ‘not working out’ I think she meant that it didn’t end in marriage and babies, or the fact that it ended at all. But that doesn’t mean that things that don’t work out end up being for nothing.
I look around me now, and I am living in one of the most beautiful parts of the world. My friends are among the most inspiring and imaginative people I have ever met, I love my job, my lifestyle and the adventure I'm having. Had I not taken chances on other people and, on occasions, thrown caution to the wind, I may still be in London, hating the noise, the traffic and the anonymity while wishing I were in a place with more space, more green, more air. I might still be in Bristol, thinking similar things. I almost certainly wouldn’t be living in a horse box on the top of a windy hill.
Of course, I could well be living in a vineyard in Tuscany, or a small village in Siberia (again). But I guess the point is, I’m happy with the choices, and mistakes, I’ve made. I’m always learning and ‘failing’ is a part of that process. I’ll always have a go, even if I think I might not get the result I want. Sometimes, I end up with a better result than I expected. Sometimes I fail spectacularly. But taking chances and making the most of what I have will always lead to new opportunities. I may stumble, on occasions I’ll fall, but so long as I learn from it, it will be worth it in the end.
So, yes, I would do it all again.
I'd rather wish I hadn’t than wish I had.