Regret. She was feeling it.
Karly had wanted to go to the butterfly exhibit at the local Botanical Gardens. The colors and delicate flapping wings had put smiles on all of our faces. We read the informational packets and tried to identify the different types of the beautiful creatures. How fun.
And then a butterfly landed on Karly’s head.
She wasn’t thrilled. Let’s just say that.
I get it. She inherited the “freak out when an animal touches you” gene from her mother. You might remember my tale of fish touching my legs in the lake where I was swimming (how DARE they!) that I wrote about here. https://christycabe.com/2012/08/13/do-as-i-say-not-as-i-swim/ Need I say more?
So, Karly’s reaction to the creature on her head spoke clearly to me. I read her nonverbal clues and knew exactly how she felt. And I did what any mom would do.
I took a picture.
I’m happy to report that Karly did survive the “landing” and she now looks back at the day with fondness.
Her regret was only temporary.
I get that too. I have moments of temporary regret. But, looking back, the regret dissolved. It fades into something else. Gratitude. I feel thankfulness for the moments I pressed on and through the temporary regret in order to get to the goodness on the other side.
The temporary regret that accompanied my pounding heart and shaking knees as I stood in front of 700 college students at my alma mater and chose to share my vulnerable story in their chapel service turned into gratitude that maybe I encouraged one heart that was needing hope.
The temporary regret of my aching back muscles from hours spent on bleachers watching my children compete dissolves into gratitude for the friendships and the lessons gained on the court.
The temporary regret of sleepless nights and swollen ankles during the late weeks of pregnancy led to a gratitude I can barley contain now that I have those babies who have grown into young people I adore.
The temporary regret of burning muscles and screaming lungs as I excercise turns to health and happy endorphins.
The temporary regret of choosing not to watch that television show and instead having a face to face conversation with my husband leads to a real life romance that beats any that would play out on the screen.
Temporary regret. I get it. I’ve felt it. I don’t love it.
But I do love the beauty it produces in its aftermath.
The delicate and fleeting moments of temporary regret are soon gone, like the butterfly wings that fly away and leave behind something beautiful.
This post is part of the Five Minute Friday community where bloggers are encouraged to write for about 5 minutes about a topic based on a one-word prompt. This week’s word: REGRET