Drowning in Regret vs. Boogie Boards
No mice sightings or captures to report. However, I have put a note by the kitchen window as a reminder to take a look in the live trap. One year I forgot to check and later found three dead mice. I will always regret that even as I see some humor in the irony of it all. It’s a strange thing, regret, weighing you down with memories you don’t want. It is said (and I tend to agree) that we are more likely to regret the things we didn’t do than the things we did. I fear it comes from a lack of courage on my part, an inability to get rid of those worst case scenarios that are swimming around in my head, those terrible things that could happen if I leaped into the water with both feet at once. And when that’s happening, when I know I’ll regret what I didn’t do, I so desperately want to be the Ann of my childhood dreams, a cowgirl on her pinto pony, galloping across the hills in search of adventure and, of course, animals to rescue. Sometimes, however, I get a taste of her. Today I wrote a poem about regret and boogie boards.
Regret can pull you down
like the silent undertow
that takes you out to that deep place
where you stop fighting.
Or drags you along the sand near the shore
filling your nose and mouth
with the age old grit of bad memories.
This is the undertow that makes you fearful
to go in the water
that makes you watch from the shore
and later makes you regret your fear of regret.
Be like the woman
who at 56
wearing a two piece tankini
over her rounded middle
borrows her daughter’s boogie board
and heads into the sea.
Who tries to catch a wave
that will take her back
in one exhilarating ride.
Who is swept under
again and again
soft skin scraping the rough bottom
gasping for breath when she reappears
whose daughter asks her to get out of the water
admitting she’s afraid for her mother.
Who is amazed by her own desire
her craziness that won’t let go.
Who walks out of the waves and says
to the young stranger watching her
that she hasn’t felt this alive in years.