A few years ago, I endured the Worst Interview Ever.
It had been three months since I delivered my premature baby girl. And three months since I got laid off from my supposed-to-be dream job. With the lovely mix of snow and ice that only true Midwesterners can appreciate, the weather was bad enough that schools were closed and roads were empty.
Except for me. Because I was not about to miss this interview.
After risking life and limb to drive to the office where my meeting was scheduled, I started things off on the absolute wrong foot by declining to shake the interviewer’s hand. I had a nasty cold, and I thought I was being considerate. He thought I was being rude.
I should’ve known then that this would not end well.
He started with the usual questions and a thorough description of the position I wanted. Then he began grilling me.
“Where did you go to college?”
“Why did you go there?”
“Do you regret that choice?”
“What was your major?”
“Why did you choose that?”
“Do you regret that choice?”
And then he walked through every single step of my career path, asking the same questions: “Why did you make that choice?” and “Do you regret it?”
I may have stumbled over the why of some of my choices, but I told him honestly that I didn’t regret a one. Even the ones that led to burn out, a four-month gap on my resume, or a lay-off.
Sara of Gitzen Girl wrote about this a couple months ago. Instead of dwelling on how exciting or better her life would be if she’d made different choices, she asked, “What experiences would be missing from my life if I had chosen another path?”
That’s exactly how I feel.
My life – namely, my scrutinized career – has not exactly followed the path I expected. Some of my choices have led to stress and hurt and disillusionment, despite my best intentions and plans.
But they have also led to excitement and adventure and memories I wouldn’t trade for anything.
Have you had experiences that you would have missed if you’d taken the easy route or the expected choice or the well-traveled path?Leave a Comment
Great post! It stirs pondering in my mind, but no, I don’t regret my choices. Some of them have not been the easy ones, or the obvious ones, and some caused heartache and stress, but God always has shown up and done SOMETHING with all of them. Some of those “things” have been fantastic friendships, leading someone to Him, and learning more about His love for me!
Wonderful post. I honestly don’t know how to answer that one. As I sit here thinking about where I am and the choices I made that got me here, maybe one or two I would have changed? Perhaps I would, but I doubt it. You never know what blessings came from some mistakes. Much to think about though. In many instances I see God’s hand. Hmmm…
Erin Brady says
I got pregnant when I was a junior in college. I dropped out of college to have the baby and move back home with my parents. It was quite a hard time. I later went back to school, changed my major and married a wonderful man who is a wonderful father to my daughter.
The things that I thought were mistakes at the time ended up pointing me in a direction that led me back to God and back to pure contentment.
God’s ways are so much better than our ways. I am so thankful for my daughter and the life that God has blessed me with…even if the journey here wasn’t my original plan.
I too (like a previous commenter) got pregnant before marriage (I found out the day before my final exams my last semester before graduation, needless to say, my finals didn’t go so well). I never thought that was something that would happen to me, but I went down the wrong path, made some not-so-great choices, and it did.
Through what I thought were mistakes, God has given me the most wonderful blessings I could have ever asked for. My children bring me more joy than I could have ever imagined. Yes, I had great plans for what I wanted to do with my life after graduating (I had been making contacts in NYC to pursue working in PR there, and now I’m in Illinois as a stay-at-home mom – big difference :))
So often, I think about what life would be like if I had not made the choices I did, and it’s hard not to deal with regret about the choices themselves, but when I look at what I have now – Wow. I wouldn’t trade it for anything!
Oh, Mary, I don’t think I can tell you how you spoke to me today. Thank you.
Lisa-Jo @ The Gypsy Mama says
So many choices I would go back and do differently if I could. But the lessons I have learned through them? Invaluable.
I was just talking to my coworker about this today! There must be something in the air. 🙂 It’s hard to say I would undo or re-do certain things in my life, because there are people and situations in my life now I would never ever want to give up. Yes, there have been times of disgrace and episodes of shameful behavior I’d rather not have on my record. But on the other hand, shame and disgrace are mighty good teachers on the how-tos of repentance. Unfortunately, that’s a lesson I have to put into use far more often than I’d like! 🙂
Michelle DeRusha @ Graceful says
Absolutely! If I’d dug in my heels and refused to relocate from Massachusetts to Nebraska when my husband got a job here 9 years ago, I may have missed out on finding God! Sure it was painfully difficult to leave my family, my sister and my best friend. But I met God for the first time here in Nebraska, and that’s a choice I will never regret.
Holley Gerth says
Mary, you are so resilient and I love how you turn all the rocks that may be in your path into stepping stones that are building a bridge to even more of what God has for you! Thanks for helping all of us do that too.
Thanks, Holley. Its funny. Ive been switching my blog over to WordPress, and as Ive looked back through my old posts, I see the same theme over and over. The cool part is, though, that God has used my stumbling blocks to help other people! (And its kind of nice to know Im not the only one with these hang-ups!)
Love you! Hope youre having a great day!
Blog:Giving Up on Perfect
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Karen Swim says
In answer to your question, my whole entire life, twists, turns, losses, gains, failures, bruises, bumps and all are the roadmap of my life that cause me to daily humble myself knowing that I am not only fearfully and wonderfully made but fearfully and wonderfully following a path that is uniquely my own. No regrets only gratitude, blessings and plenty of life lessons along the way!
great, great, post! I often think of why I went to college since I got married while in college and then started a family right after…no ever finding a “real” job. But then I think of the best friends I found while there, the amazing experiences I had, the wrong choices I had to live through to be who I am. It is a decision I would make again hands down. Thank you for this post 🙂
Ann Voskamp@Holy Experience says
all my thanks.
Today, I found out at noon that my sweet hubby has been laid off from his job. What timing with this post. My thought’s are still swimming (as are his), but after tears, I was reminded of this Phillips Craig and Dean line: You are on Your throne, You are God alone. Right now, in the good times and bad, You are on Your throne, You are God alone. I don’t know if I would consider this a bad time, after remembering His will is perfect, His plans sovereign. He has not forgotten about the Jackson family. I say this not knowing what to expect…fearful. We are basically a single income family…but, if HE provides for the birds, how much more will HE provide for us…not really on topic…but basically to sum up…NO REGRETS.
Yes! I could have made better choices all along the way! I could have chosen to not have a baby at 19 but I chose life and I don’t regret it for a second. I could have chosen to give up on my marriage when it was in the dumpster with last week’s garbage, but I didn’t! Life may not always be what we dreamed but it is what we were meant to live!
Do You Regret That Choice? — Giving Up on Perfect says
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