The Key to Happiness

Samantha - Louisville, Kentucky
Entered on May 5, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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The Key to Happiness

I always hear people say, “I should’ve done this…” or “If I could go back in time I would’ve done this differently…”and to me, it’s a tired overused excuse. When I start to talk about my regrets, my father always slows me down and says, “You should’ve, you would’ve, and you could’ve… but you can’t now, can ya Sweet Pea?”

I remember how I felt the first time I heard that. I was angry, I thought that by telling me that, he was basically saying that he didn’t care about how I was feeling. I asked what he meant that first time and he said, “Pea, I’ve never lied to ya. Sittin’ here and regretting something won’t fix it. If there was a way to change things, people wouldn’t learn any lessons about life. I know that you feel like changing things so that they never happened, and you feel like changing them because your actions have hurt someone that you never really meant to hurt, but that’s not gonna solve anything because you’re never gonna get that chance.

“The best thing you can do now is work it out and grow from this. If you don’t, it won’t get better. Plus, Pea, the longer ya sit here feeling sorry about it, the less time in life you give yourself to be truly happy. Every minute you waste sitting here feeling bad is a whole sixty seconds of happiness that you’re never gonna get back and it’s a whole minute you could’ve done something with to make the person you hurt happy again. Regret is a tragic fall, all you can do now is get off you’re butt and make things right.”

It was an interesting perspective I never thought I’d hear come from my dad, but I realized that he was right. Regret is one of the most tragic pitfalls in life, and it’s one of the biggest fun-suckers life can throw at you. I believe that if you get so caught up in regret, you lose time that you could’ve made something right and be happy again. Regret drives people mad with sadness and should be overcome. I believe in never wasting a moment in sadness. True happiness comes from within. I believe in the power of kindness and forgiveness, the right to be happy, and the ability of all people to make things right.