Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

What would you do over?

If you had a chance to go back in time and do something over, would you? Do you have regrets?
I have a tattoo on my ankle that says “To Die With No Regrets” (yes, I triple-checked the Chinese characters after hearing the horror stories of tattoo artists giving you the “I’m an asshole” one instead).  The tattoo hasn’t yet become ironic.

I’d venture to guess that there are very few people my age who don’t wish they could have a do-over for something or other. Who wouldn’t want to go back and fix a mistake, undo a hurt, take a different job or wait until the market was better to buy a home? I’d love to be able to travel to 1995 and buy 5,000 shares of Apple Stock. Who wouldn’t?

What would you do over?

I’ve been thinking about the One Thing that I’d most like to travel back in time and fix. Should I choose to travel back and wear more sunscreen? Take better care of my teeth? Learn to love running? Should I try harder to find Robert and have Tucker earlier in life?

Nah. I don’t want a do-over.

Our fuckups, celebrations, tears, and our laughter shape our lives. They make us who we are, guide us, and direct who we will become. Living life without mistakes means we’re not taking risks. It means we’re staying indoors too much.  It means we’re being too safe.

I have made some world-class bad decisions. I have acted impulsively, stupidly, and beat myself up over awkward conversations and real and imagined slights. But I wouldn’t go back and change a single thing.

Changing X leads to changing the rest of the alphabet. Every decision, experience, choice, love, and regret has led me here. To today. To life. To life as me, sharing it with this boy, and this man.

So no thanks. I don’t want a do-over.

This has been a Finish the Sentence Friday post. The sentence is “If I could go back and do something over…”
Your lovely hosts:
Janine’s Confessions of a Mommyaholic (TwitterFacebook)
Can I get another bottle of whine? (TwitterFacebook)
Mommy, for Real (TwitterFacebook)
Dawn’s Disaster (Twitter, Facebook)


  • Kenya G. Johnson - Awwwww. I love it. I often wish things had happened just a little earlier for me so that maybe there could or would be a second child but then that wouldn’t be then the life I have now would be totally different. So it is as its meant to be.July 12, 2013 – 1:33 pmReplyCancel

  • Kim Pugliano - Not one single moment, word, outfit, drink, fart, roommate, boyfriend or meal. Nothing.July 12, 2013 – 1:37 pmReplyCancel

  • Jean - This is called the Butterfly Effect, right? It’s a bad movie but also a kind of scary science fiction novel. I totally agree with you and I think it’s a handy way of avoiding self-shaming. I often got angry at myself for buying the first house we did. Bad location, needed 100% updates in every room. However, that’s where my son and daughter were conceived. What if we had been living somewhere else? Would my kids not have been who they are?
    Yes. Absolutely. Your tattoo will never be wrong. 🙂July 12, 2013 – 1:41 pmReplyCancel

  • Janine Huldie - Seem to be the prevalent theme of the day with not changing things necessarily and must say I am truly happy to hear this for the most part from you and others. thanks you as always for sharing and for joining us again!! 🙂July 12, 2013 – 1:42 pmReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - Kenya,
    While I wish things happened earlier, too, it’s just not worth the risk to lose the way things are now!

    Kim,
    Not even a fart? You are awesome.

    Jean,
    Yes, actually. I almost referenced The Butterfly Effect in the post but that made it really long and weird. The original one was almost three times as long as this…but I just wasn’t feeling it.
    I know exactly what you mean about the house – I hate on this one all the time, but it’s where Tucker has known home, always…

    Janine,
    Thanks, Janine! I haven’t had a chance to read other people’s but am really looking forward to it!
    July 12, 2013 – 1:45 pmReplyCancel

  • Julie Sparks - I totally agree. I never saw “The Butterfly Effect”, but there is a Star Trek: The Next Generation episode called “Tapestry” where Picard goes back and redoes something seemingly obvious (he doesn’t get into a fight that damages his heart) and discovers that that brush with death was exactly what influenced him to live life to the fullest. I truly believe that if you start to pull at the threads that make up your life you will undo that which makes you you! Great finish to the sentence!July 12, 2013 – 1:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Joy - I love you. If you read my FTSF post you will know why, sister! xoxoJuly 12, 2013 – 1:54 pmReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - Julie,
    Yes, perfectly said and I love Picard! It’s true that once you go back and start changing little things that big things become affected. Now worth the risk!
    July 12, 2013 – 1:55 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerri - I am completely surprised by you, once again. I thought FOR SURE you were going to go with something from the 80’s and make me remember those bad hair days. Instead you went for the sweet. I love this post. I love that you know meeting Robert sooner might not have been the best thing, that you met him when it was meant to happen and not a moment before.

    And just think, if you did have a do-over and ended up sleeping with Billy Idol? You might never have met Robert 🙂

    Love you. Love this post. Love that photo of your boys enjoying the beach (why can’t my girl love the beach). But most of all I love how you always surprise me!!!

    Awesome post my friend. Well played.July 12, 2013 – 2:19 pmReplyCancel

  • Jessica Smock - I completely agree with you! I tried to think of something to write for this and came to the same conclusion. I wouldn’t change anything — even the bad things — because they led to everything in my life today. So that’s why I ended up writing about potential regrets, rather than present ones.July 12, 2013 – 2:34 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - I couldn’t have said it better myself. That’s why I picked something pretty trivial and not at all life changing. I’m good with how things are, and I’m not messing with it.July 12, 2013 – 2:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Lori Lavender Luz - This is the post I would have written had I participated in the bloghop. I’m happy where I am now, and everything that led up to it was therefore necessary. I do look back and see how I mishandled things, but probably each time I was doing the best I could with what I had to work with in that moment.

    What a happiness-inducing photo!July 12, 2013 – 3:27 pmReplyCancel

  • Stephanie @ Mommy, for real. - I wholeheartedly agree; no do-overs here! Even those of us who have been married twice (or more!) don’t often say “I wish I hadn’t done that.”

    Oh wow. I had to stop typing to deal with an EPIC meltdown from my oldest and I totally lost my train of thought. Anyway… those photos were perfection!July 12, 2013 – 4:31 pmReplyCancel

  • clark - well said… I tip my Wakefield Doctrine hat (on my damn head) in respect. too topic, all word-tangly and such, but you have expressed the concept in a way that makes sense no matter how many movies or books, one amy have read.
    And this is as it should be (and further to your credit) because it (this “about those past decisions of yours”) is something everyone knows on one level or another.. you have simply expressed it simply and elegantly.

    coolJuly 12, 2013 – 4:35 pmReplyCancel

  • Alana Terry - I’m with you on this one! Glad to see you around bloggingville again too!July 12, 2013 – 5:44 pmReplyCancel

  • The Pink Roller Coaster - As usual, Kristi, you are right on the money. Love this! Thanks for sharing. -BrigidJuly 12, 2013 – 6:18 pmReplyCancel

  • clark - “…hey is it too late to change my Post? I do have something I would want to change in my life. If I had the three wishes and had already gotten the (” test garbled here, indistinguishable …something about large and multiple …”) and I gave my other wish to the person standing next to me that has the lesser reflexes, I would wish this:

    ‘I would go back and simply read and edit the Comment that I just left. Jeez… how much time would it have taken for me to proof that thing? Thank you for not reading the incredibly not proof-read Comment.’*

    * I still totally mean what I said about this here Post here, I would just prefer that I employed the English language to express it.July 12, 2013 – 6:18 pmReplyCancel

  • Diane Tolley - Huh. You’re right. I wouldn’t change a thing!July 12, 2013 – 6:23 pmReplyCancel

  • Slu - You know, while reading your Post, I was thinking to myself what I would “do over.” I thought of a few (ha!!!) and then, finished reading your Post and thought: You know what? She’s right!!! Makes us who we are. I’m with ya.

    Your Tat… I’ve got one that says: No Regrets (with a red Heart). About: My time with my wife.

    Happy Friday, SluJuly 12, 2013 – 6:29 pmReplyCancel

  • Dani Ryan - You know, I feel the same way you do. Yes, I wish I could go back and wear the strongest sunblock known to mankind when I was a kid because I’m freaked out about the amount of sun exposure I had, and yes, I wish I had spent more time with my grandparents. But I wouldn’t change any of the big stuff – the bad relationships, the amount of time we waited to start trying for kids, etc. etc. Because if I changed that, I wouldn’t be where I am right now. And, well, that makes me sad!!!

    Oh, and I love the meaning of your tattoo. That is awesome. Mine? Not so much. I wrote about it earlier this week if you want to check it out! http://wp.me/p2KIJm-1cxJuly 12, 2013 – 8:54 pmReplyCancel

  • Kate Hall - Aw, I love this. I don’t really have much I’d want to do over either – just when I really hurt people. I hate that I’ve done that. Great post!July 12, 2013 – 9:47 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - I agree with you. There are things I would like to go back and change, but every past decision brought me here today. If I changed even one little thing along this route called life, I’d be in a different place; I’d be a different person. But still, it is occasionally fun to think about what I would’ve changed. Then after fantasizing for a few seconds, I always decide naw. I’ll live with the decisions I made. I learned a lot from them. I like today’s place.July 12, 2013 – 11:13 pmReplyCancel

  • Jen - I hear ya sister! LOUD AND CLEAR! Everything we are is a culmination of everything we have done, why would I want to change where I am now? MWAH!July 13, 2013 – 12:43 amReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - Kerri,
    Hang in there. I have high hopes that Tucker will show Boo the joys of the beach IRL one day. It’s a magical place (once you get over the crappy sensory stuff. Also, Tucker cut his chin open HUGE and we chose to not go to the ER and have doctors hold him still to look at him while he screamed). Maybe I should have gone with something from the 80’s but I just couldn’t find a way to bring it around to not wanting today to be different, you know?

    Jessica,
    I loved your potential regrets post and have the same ones regarding “Do I need to give Tucker a sibling?” as you do.

    Dana,
    I loved YOURS.
    July 13, 2013 – 12:51 amReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - Lori,
    Thanks. I had a hard time writing this as it felt just like the “life’s turning points” one and I just couldn’t find a way to bring regrets around.

    Stephanie,
    Thanks, you. Yup, I don’t say “I wish I hadn’t done that” when it comes to most things. And those I did, I won’t be writing about here!
    July 13, 2013 – 12:55 amReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - @CLARK,
    You get your own comment box in case you come back to check. I HATE not having nested comments. Every week, more and more. So hard to reply personally to everybody’s awesomeness, and this week, I want to reply personally to yours. First, huge kudos to you for calling me out on Twitter before I even knew what I’d write. I mean, I knew I would say “nothing” but not how I’d say it. You knew I’d say nothing and that’s freaking awesome. The Doctrine works.
    Your sentences – like I said YOU WIN THIS WEEK – “everything we do creates a chain of events that continues on into the future” is exactly what I wanted to say. I also wish I wrote this sentence: “…is only one of a number of possible lives, each created by a single decision.”
    Perfect. And yeah, I’d say the Doctrine works. It took me a few weeks to “get it” but now? I get it. Kudos to you, friend.July 13, 2013 – 1:09 amReplyCancel

  • Kristi Campbell - Slu!
    I can’t believe we have almost the same tat! Awesome and I love that you came to the same conclusion. So freaking awesome.

    Dani,
    Went there and commented. For me, it was more about the belly ring. But I suppose that may be due to life here being about me. Awesome and hilarious post, you!

    Kate,
    I think it’s amazing you went back and apologized on Facebook. Seriously awesome.

    Jen,
    Yup. I’ll take what I have, thank you very much. And mwah right back.
    July 13, 2013 – 1:11 amReplyCancel

  • Sarah Almond - I ended up linking up two posts for this one, because my Secret Subject Swap prompt today just happened to be the same thing, and I also wrote about Do-Overs. The former is the list of things I’d be happy to experience again. The latter are the things that I’d really like to just do-over. Yup, I’m indecisive now aren’t I?July 13, 2013 – 1:28 amReplyCancel

  • Robert Martin Campbell Jr. - I would not have done it any other way. To the best decision in my life,,, Mr. X,July 13, 2013 – 3:35 amReplyCancel

  • Rich Rumple - Kristi – You’ve obviously discovered the secret of life. Acceptance and appreciation. We are who we are because of our achievements and failures. Our strength comes from our experiences, and creates the person we are … ever changing, but always the same. Our wisdom comes from life and the observations we make over the years. Our stupidity comes from the failure to observe or accept that change is inevitable. Your satisfaction with your loved ones displays a person, not only of compassion, but of one appreciative of what has been provided her, perfect in the eyes of others or not. You’ve also found that the love you give has no boundaries, and the love you receive is to be savored as a golden elixir to the last drop. I wish you and your family much continued happiness and strength to see through the days of clouds and bask in the rays of a warming sun. May God bless you all.July 13, 2013 – 4:02 amReplyCancel

  • karen - love that you wouldn’t change anything either, the thought of changing one thing and poof…I wouldn’t be Dino’s mom…and that terrifies me.July 13, 2013 – 7:16 amReplyCancel

  • Rachel Demas - Another beautiful piece of wisdom. Mistakes absolutely make us who we are. I hope I have the space to let my daughter make them like I did.July 13, 2013 – 12:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Golden spoons - This is such a sweet post! I said something similar in my post and referenced the Back to the Future movie. Remember how Marty McFly has to do things so as not to change the outcome? He can’t see his past self or else = doom!! That’s how I feel. Nothing is worth doing differently if it would change my present day.July 13, 2013 – 12:34 pmReplyCancel

  • Kera - This is lovely. I wouldn’t want a do-over, either. I believe that all of the things that happen in our lives lead us to those things that we love the most. The life we love the most. I would never trade my husband or my children for a chance to do anything differently.July 13, 2013 – 2:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Liz Allan - I’ve got too many too choose from! But my only serious long-term regret is getting a tattoo on my face! A very long, painful, expensive process to remove, but I guess once it is eventually all gone I will have well and truly learnt an important life lesson…to love myself the way nature intended me to be.July 14, 2013 – 6:32 amReplyCancel

  • Jhanis - Beautiful! Simply beautiful 🙂July 15, 2013 – 10:30 amReplyCancel

  • Ali - Off The Mark - Great minds do think alike. Great post! 🙂July 15, 2013 – 12:58 pmReplyCancel

  • Melanie Carpenter - I don’t regret the path my life has taken but I would go back and wait longer to marry my husband. We’ve been together since I was 15, him 17. I would of taken time to discover ME cuz now I feel like I’m in a glass jar with a lid, wanting to get out and can’t…July 15, 2013 – 6:14 pmReplyCancel

  • Deb @ Urban Moo Cow - Beautiful, lady. I like the idea that changing x changes the rest of the alphabet. Interesting post to read today in light of my most recent post on feeling I would be doing something different if I had not been held back by my own demons.

    Can I be contrarian though? I think there are some traumatic events that, despite having made you who you are, you are not better off for having had happen. I think I would go back and change at least one thing in that vein. Otherwise you get into this whole “everything happens for a reason” bs, and I don’t buy that. What do you think? Maybe a conversation for offline. 🙂July 17, 2013 – 12:48 pmReplyCancel

  • Julie Sparks - I thought you might like to know that I featured this blog in a post about my favorites. Julie’s Boyz Blogspot: Some Fantastic Blogs Excellent writing!July 17, 2013 – 7:01 pmReplyCancel

  • SocialButterflyMom - I would have worked out yesterday ;p I can pretty much use that one anytime.July 18, 2013 – 8:38 amReplyCancel

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