When a baby is born, it doesn’t know what is ahead of its life. When this tiny life is brought to its life, this baby is covered in safe cloud of innocence and freedom. Its beautiful little cries, and smiles, safe in mothers arms, is not aware that one day it will be stripped from its innocence and will face making choices.

As we grow up, we make mistakes. Numerous mistakes, and it is always up to us whether we decide to learn from them, and not repeat them. We also meet all kinds of people on our path, and those people sometimes stay with us, and some people sometimes leave. We go through periods of ages, trying to identify ourselves, find what we are always looking for, and always meet expectations, whether they’re others’ or our own. We set the bar high and we are always trying to jump over it and set it even higher. We put so much into our lives that we simply forget to… breathe.

I have recently started reminiscing my past.I have started thinking of all the the moments that had happened and how some of those things led me to where I am now. And I am not only talking about my own choices, but also other people’s choices that had had a huge impact on my own life. And that is when I have started thinking ‘but what if…?’.

Those thoughts were not pretty. Those thoughts often led to me endlessly crying into my pillow at night. ‘What ifs’ have made my life a battle for the past few weeks, given me constant headaches, no sleep, and stress, and most of all made me neglect my ‘now’.

I kept thinking about how instead of handing something to my late grandmother, I threw it to her disrespectfully, and I remember my mum telling me off. I don’t know why this particular memory has struck me but I remember crying so much and regretting what I had done. I also remember my grandmother comforting me and telling nothing has happened. To this day, I still regret throwing it at her, but what would have happened if I didn’t?

Another time when I was a moody teenager, my mother asked me to take our dog for a walk. I was so angry that I had to do it, I tried to chase her away from me, throwing sticks at our beautiful dogs and just breaking down in tears thinking to myself ‘what am I doing?’, but my dog still came back to me and loved me and comforted me knowing i was not happy. I regret doing this and thinking ‘what if i didn’t do this?’.

I remember having those arguments with my mother and saying all those hurtful things and thinking ‘what if i didn’t say those words to her?’. I still say some hurtful words to my own, amazing mother who gives me unconditional love and think to myself ‘what if I was a different person?’.

I remember not visiting my own father too often even though we lived so close. And how much I regret not making effort to visit my own father who gas gifted me with this life. ‘What if I made an effort?’.

I remember my own cousin coming to visit my on a holiday, and not taking him to a party for his birthday because I was sulking. ‘What if I just put my own selfishness aside?’.

I remember being back home for winter break from college and saying that I will visit my great grandmother next time I’m down. Couple of weeks later, she died.  ‘What if I visited her?’.

I remember saying all those hurtful words to the boy I loved so dearly. All those words that would hurt any young teenage boy. He got married to someone else yesterday. ‘What if I was actually nice to him and told him how I was feeling?’

There are many more moments, stories that filled me up with so much regret. Those moments break my heart into pieces. But those moments shaped me to be a different person today. Those moments taught me to be a better person, and to work on myself. To visit and speak to my family often because you only have one family in our lives. And time is ticking. Nobody is ever around forever. People come, and people go.
I have also realised that I cannot change the past and the choices I have made. Because yes, I have made those choices and every single of them was stripping me of my innocence, shaping me in a way, leading to a certain path in my life.
If any of those things would have happened differently, I wouldn’t be sitting on my bed right now, sipping a cuppa, taking a breather.

Because I got up yesterday and I have decided enough is enough. That I have to start being alive, to start breathing deeply, to respect and love more. I know I cannot neglect my ‘now’ and forget my ‘future’ because of the past. Past stays in there, and it can’t creep up to you if you don’t let it. If you learn to let go, if you just stand still for a moment and breathe. That is when you realise you are free, and that innocence is still there in you. It’s never completely gone, we just have to dig deeper for it, but we find it eventually.

Whatever is the future going to bring me, I’ll accept it with open arms. Because I know it’ll all be based on my choices. How my ‘now’ is shaped by my past, that is how my ‘future’ will be shaped by ‘now’.

So let’s live, laugh, sing, dance and love!