If you suddenly woke up one morning and found yourself back in your ten-year-old self, but remembered everything from all of your life that you had lived thus far, would you do anything differently moving forward? Or would you go back through life again doing the exact same things all over again?
I’ve often thought about this very question, mainly because of the many fantasy-based television shows and films I’ve watched over the years that touched on this very notion. Honestly, given the amount of poor decisions I’ve made in this life that led me down many dark paths, I have often found myself wishing I had a do-over and could go back to an age where I was still pure and innocent, which would be around the age of 10.
To live out my youth again from that age, I would want to make so many changes, from connecting to God right from the start, to the sports I partook in, to the creative outlets I’d engaged in, to the avoidance of various individuals who brought much darkness into my life, to be free of all alcohol, drugs, and cigarettes from the beginning, to dealing with my sexuality when I hit puberty instead of over a decade later, to the areas of study I’d pursue and even the college I’d attend, I see a far different path than the one I ended up on.
I try not to fantasize my life away though, because the likelihood of me waking up one morning in my ten-year-old self remembering this challenging life I’ve lived so far, is probably not something that’s ever going to happen. Nevertheless, being 46 years old, soon to be 47, I’m doing my best to start my life over, right here, right now. These past few years I’ve shed so much of my former self, a self I never liked much, one that I absolutely feel got formed mostly by me conforming to the masses.
That’s why I regularly thank God I have a faith in Him now and am totally clean and sober from all my former addictions. And it’s why I thank God daily as well for helping me find the courage to start pursuing a few new areas of interest, like my writing and volunteering at places in need, and even getting much more active in my life of recovery itself. Unfortunately, my body is not able to engage in various physical activities that my kid inside me would really love to do at this time, nor do I have the mental and emotional faculties to start taking classes again at this time either. But I pray every day that my health will be fully restored and soon, mainly in the hopes to get a second chance at those things and more. In the meantime, I do my best to do what I can, especially things I never got to do growing up.
So yes, if I had a do-over, I would certainly try to change quite a bit. But at the present time I don’t and I have to live with all the decisions and consequences I made over the years. I’ve learned a lot from them though, that’s for sure, and much of who I am today is because of all those paths I went down, both dark and light, ever since I was a little kid. Many would say, I might never become the spiritually focused man I’ve become if I got a do-over and began changing it all. But somehow, I think that if I did, I’d find myself back at the very same spot I’m sitting in now, one where I’m living out a life of servitude to God and seeking Him for guidance and direction every, single, day. And truly, that’s the only thing that’s important to me nowadays.
Regardless, I don’t think my childhood fantasies of living out a do-over are shot just yet, because I think I’m actually in the midst of that very thing as I sit here and write these very words. My do-over of course is not as a 10-year-old kid, but as a 46-year-old adult instead. And it’s only by the Grace of God, the one who is always ready and willing to grant any of us a do-over at any point in life, that I was given a second chance, one that I know I’m not going to throw away, not now…and not ever again…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson