Regrets… Anyone?


Just a couple of minutes ago, I saw my cousin post a photo of his mom in a hospital bed surrounded by a few friends. It had the caption “(Friends) singing to my mom. Great encouragement to us, bros & sis”. I was alarmed because I have never seen my aunt look so weak.

I found out from my mom that my aunt has stage 4 lung cancer.


My aunt is my dad’s sister-in-law but she was like a second mother to me because I stayed at her house while I was in college. You know, to save on dorm fees since her house is really close to my university.┬áSo for 4 years, we watched news programs and some TV drama series together. She made sure that I had something to eat for dinner, and that I felt comfortable in my room every night. She would even let me sleep in her room whenever it got too warm in the room I was sleeping in.


Seeing the picture my cousin posted today, I regret the fact that I had not taken more time to visit her after I graduated, and that I did not even think about visiting her before I moved to California.

Now at this time of her life, I wish I were there with her. I know I wouldn’t be of much help, and I’m sure I won’t be able to take the pain away. But I just want to hold her hand and at least let her feel that I love her.

I guess that’s my main regret. It’s not that I feel bad for doing something bad. But it’s the kind of regret you feel for NOT doing something — like in my case, I regret not taking the time to make her feel that I love her and that I appreciate all the things she has done for me.

And now I’m halfway around the world and all I can do now is pray for her. I know prayer is powerful. But I just wish I could pray for her as I hold her hand.

I guess the lesson for me here is to not let a day pass without telling — and showing — the people important to me that I love them. So that I’ll never regret not showing them how special they are to me.

Do you have any regrets for doing — or not doing — something?


Regrets… Anyone? — 31 Comments

  1. Too sad, isn’t it? My grandmother passed away last February at 98. She was such a great cook and always shared her recipes with me – I have a box full of recipes hand-written on 3×5 cards. I regret that I didn’t make enough of them and thank her for these, which I will treasure forever and hand down to my nieces and nephews.

  2. sorry you had to find out about your Aunt like that–it is a regret but if you can take pause from it to re-evaluate things for the future-its a lesson learned in my book. regrets teach us to change for the future-so yes I’ve had my own and learn and try to be better next time. Hoping peace comes for your aunt and your family
    Kathleen Kennedy-Leon recently posted..geraldine kennedy commented on the post, The Mommy MD Guide to Pregnancy and Birth Book ReviewMy Profile

  3. I’m sorry about your aunt. We have had this conversation so many times. Like when we say we are going to get to know more people in our church. We’re going to invite people over for lunch, and end up getting busy. A few years ago, one of those people we really wanted to spend time with was killed in a head on car accident. He had 6 kids in the car with him. They were all okay, but saw their dad die. Can you imagine? Life can change in an instance. I think we will always have regrets about something, don’t you?
    Kelly Stilwell recently posted..Pinterest and Google Calendar make dinner a snap!My Profile

  4. Maybe you could call her and let her son put the phone to her ear and pray for and tell her how much you love her.

  5. I think we should not be afraid to visit the person that is terminally ill – sometimes fear makes us stay away when they need our support the most. Good luck to your family while you deal with your aunt’s diagnosis.

  6. Wow. First, I’m sorry to hear that. I don’t know that a photo should have been posted.But, that’s not my place to say.She knows you love her. She always will. Sorry I have no words of comfort.Remember all the good,happy times.

  7. I have more regrets than I can count. I try to be the best me I can but I seem to be good at failing. I am grateful for my children and my grandchildren. I am glad that I was taught to show and tell them I love them. I am also glad that I know it is up to them to accept that love or not.

  8. You both are blessed just having each other in your lives. I too find FB bittersweet being so far from my family – but it keeps me involved in their lives. If she’s anything like my mom ‘she knows’ and always will know how important she is to you. No regrets.

  9. My sister has been battling Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer, for a year now. Last week the church held an Annointing service for her. She knows I couldn’t afford the trip…but I still regret not being there for her, specially since I don’t believe any of our family was able to travel back to So Cal, for the service.

  10. I have had many similar regrets in my life. However, I have not realized this until recently. Throughout my life I have separated myself from some of the people who were the closest to me when they were in the end stages of life. I did this because t was too hard for ME to see them dieing. I couldn’t handle the pain and helplessness I felt inside when there was nothing more that could be done. So, I stayed away. I didn’t call, I didn’t visit, I didn’t help them get things in order. I’ve always felt a little guilt for this but never really felt “regret”.

    I now am in their position. I have an irreparable heart condition and have been pronounced “terminal” by the doctors. unfortunately or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, I have now lived nearly a year past my expectancy. Over the last 1 1/2 years as my condition has slowly deteriorated, my family and friends have all slowly drifted away leaving me feeling alone and helpless. I now know how my family and friends of the past felt. You sit around wondering what you did, what you could have done differently and what you can do to get those people who you hold dearest to your hearts to come back into your life. The feelings of loneliness and helplessness suck the remaining life right out of you and depression sets in HEAVY. All you want to do is get it over!

    When you have someone you are close to who is ill, don’t shut them out. You don’t need to go see them and pitty them either! Just visit them or give them a call on the phone. Tell them about something funny that happened to you that day, help them laugh a little and remember the good things in life. Don’t complain about the traffic or your boss passing you up for a promotion or the neighbor’s dog that barked all night. Don’t dwell on their illness. You really don’t even have to ask them how they are feeling, trust me, they think about it all day and they really just want a distraction. Getting them talking about it becomes depressing for both them and you. Just talk about the good things in life and you’ll be surprised how well both you and they will feel when your visit is done.

    I’m sorry I have rambled on here and dumped some of my problems on you, it’s just that your question hit real close to home for me. I’m sorry that my answer is not uplifting for you or help you feel less regret. Just remember one thing though, They do realize why you aren’t close, they do understand, and they do forgive you.

  11. I have too many regrets that I couldn’t count them if I tried. One of my biggest regrets now: is not getting in touch with my son,that I put up for adoption. I really regret not contacting him sooner. This regret will haunt me for the rest of my life.Hopefully 1 day I’ll be able to forgive myself.Hopefully!

  12. Of course I have regrets. More than I think I should. One big one was not insisting that my mom go see a doctor. She was having problems breathing. She died three months later from what they said was an ischemic heart attack, however, her doctor thinks it was a PE. Whatever it was it took her life. I saw signs but didn’t say anything, really I didn’t think anything of it. I regret I didn’t say “mom you HAVE to see a doctor, this isn’t normal. I’m taking you to the hospital RIGHT now!”

    I can’t talk to much about it. It hurts too much. I’d give nearly anything to have her back. To give her a hug to just sit and talk to her.

  13. I think we all have regrets of some kind, but I try to use them as learning what I will/won’t do in the future.

  14. I have way too many regrets, and I try not to think about them.
    My main regret is NOT spending time with my late Grandma. She passed before I got a chance to visit her, and I wished so much that I could tell her how much I loved her.
    Can you make a visit somehow?
    Lisa Wood recently posted..Kiama Mind Body Spirit ShopMy Profile

  15. Regrets? yes…I manage a live music venue and recently a couple of very talented young musicians took their own lives. Now I try to pay more attention to people and see if somebody needs to talk….you never know when a small connection could save a life.

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  25. This is so true. In todays world we do not take the time to spend with our loved ones. There is way to much texting and not enough one on one. Thank you for sharing this great article. We do learn from our mistakes. God Bless