Monday, January 17, 2011

If I Could Turn Back Time

Yesterday afternoon while I was unloading the dishwasher, Allyson remarked, "I sure wish we had a time machine."

"Yeah, baby," I replied absently as I stretched to place a mug on the top shelf.

"'Cuz if we did, we could go back to see that animal I was afraid of," she went on.

I paused, holding a plate in mid air. What on earth could she be talking about? "Oh, do you mean dinosaurs?" I asked finally, reasoning that she must be wishing she could meet a pterodactyl.

"No! I mean that animal Savannah had yesterday. Remember, I didn't hold it because I was afraid it would bite me."

"Ah, you mean Oscar the ferret!" We'd seen Savannah's new ferret, which Allyson called a garret, the night before at my sister Emily's house. It was surprisingly cute for a rodent, but I kept my distance too because I remembered being bit (hard enough to bleed) by a ferret in science class when I was about 12.

My Niece Savannah With Oscar

Allyson With the Closest Thing She'll Ever Have to a Ferret

"So you want to go back in time to YESTERDAY?" I asked, unable to control my snickering.

"Well, yeah. Then I could hold Oscar."

I started to tell her I wished I could go back two hours in time and rethink trying to force her to have a nap [so that at least I could have had a nap while she played], but I bit my tongue. It's bad enough to lose a power struggle with a four-year-old without reminding her of her victory afterward.

I thought about the whole time travel thing for quite awhile, and I decided I like Allyson's thinking. You see, if I could turn back time, I'd surely go back and undo all my regrets, which would  of course make me into a completely different person. But Allyson doesn't have any regrets--aside from passing up the opportunity to hold a ferret. In fact, she doesn't even keep a catalog of past mistakes.

When I recounted the story to Bill at bedtime last night, he didn't see the philosophical side, just offered some practical advice. "You should have pulled a hat over her eyes and told her you were putting her in a time machine, then driven back over to Emily's," he said.

Now why didn't I think of that?


Victor S E Moubarak said...

Now there's a thought ... if we could go back in time; what time would we choose?

2000 years ago when Jesus walked this earth? Victorian time in England? Pre-historic time? When?

I like your suggestion of going back and fixing past regrets. I've had a few ... but still don't know how I would have fixed them given a second chance.

God bless.

Sarah said...

Victor, what a dilemma! I've always wished I could see what it was really like in Victorian England because I've read so many great novels set in that period (Emma, Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, etc.). But how could I pass up meeting Jesus on the earth? I guess I'd have to do both!

NC Sue said...

I used to think I'd like to go back and change my regrets, too, but I decided that this is part of what God has used to create the person I am today. And while I still have plenty of room for growth, I like me today better than I liked me at any time in the past.

You are who you are in part because of who you were, where you were, what you thought and said and did. And God has used this to create something he loves immensely.

Sarah said...

Sue, you are so right. Isn't it amazing and wonderful how God can use the good experiences and the hard experiences, and even our mistakes to shape us into something beautiful. Thanks for the reminder.


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