Whenever my kids get into trouble, I always ask them if they truly believe they made the right choice in doing said activity. Was hitting your sister the best choice for letting her know you were angry – or would there have been a better one? At one point in my career, a manager commented that employees make a choice each day deciding whether or not they want to come to work. Choices come in all shapes and sizes, conscious or unconscious.
I can’t help but reflect on how a choice at the time can come back to haunt you. Many years ago, I was faced with a choice on how to deal with an issue with some friends of ours. At the time I was upset and angry and saddened by what had happened, so I chose to cut things off and walk away. At the time, I chose to do it because I was hurt – and I can be prone to lashing out when I’m hurt versus handling the situation correctly. I chose to walk away – not hit, not be verbally mean, but to walk away, lick my wounds and regroup. Too much was happening at the time, and I wasn’t sure how to deal with the situation.
The reality – I never dealt with the situation. Too much happened after that – an illness, a couple of business trips, Sept 11th, and just life in general. Next thing I knew, my friends who I needed time away from were adopting a child which was their dream. And, I wondered how do I recover from a choice I made and never intended to be a long term solution. Then, we came back from a trip, and there was a for sale sign on their house with a sold sticker. This made me sick. Not only had I made my bed, I was now going to be forced to lie in it as they moved away. In a last ditch effort to say I’m sorry and all was forgiven, I sent a note figuring they may get it when they are at the new house – but at least I could start to undo what I had already done.
Fast forward to yesterday, I somehow landed on a blog site that I quickly recognized as my friend’s site. Suddenly, I had a window into how they were doing, and I found happiness that life was going well for them – but found sadness that I was sitting here again with regret at my choice – but now faced with a new choice. Do I reach back out?