Have you ever wondered what would have happened if you’d done something a different way? Turned left instead of right. Said “yes” instead of “no”. Sometimes we have big regrets and sometimes our regrets are not so big. I was thinking about Steve the other day. He is one of my regrets. I met him in college, and I liked Steve. I mean, I really liked him, and I think I could have like liked him, if you know what I mean. He was tall, dark, AND handsome, just my type. He was one of those guys that wanted everyone to think he was tough. He rode a Harley.
When he asked me out, my heart dropped to the floor, because no one I really could have like liked every asked me out. The guys that asked me on a date were dweebs and nerds. Maybe that was because I worked in the campus game room near the Ms. Pac Man machine. Steve walked in one day and blew my hair back like one of those commercials for hair styling products. He was nothing like any man who’d ever graced the game room before or probably afterward.
When I thought about going out with him, my dreams skidded to a tragic stop. I went to commuter college, which meant I lived at home…with my father. Daddy would have never let me out of the house to go on a date with some guy on the back of a Hog. I knew this about my Daddy. There would have been a war if I’d gone out with Steve, and as much as I liked the guy, he wasn’t worth the silent treatment. Daddy had a mean look that reminded me of a rattlesnake about to strike, which is funny when I think about it, because he really was a marshmallow. I just didn’t like to disappoint him, and I was never one for facing conflict. I confess I was the original good little girl. Wait! Isn’t that two confessions in one blog post?
I told Steve “no” and the semester soon ended. He didn’t return to college the next fall and I wondered where he went. His best friend told me I’d broken poor Steve’s heart. I really, really doubt that. I mean, I think he could have like liked me if we’d had a chance. Later, I found out he would have taken me on that date in his mother’s car. You see, the choices we make do affect how our lives turn out.
So I was wondering what would have happened if I’d said “yes”, braved my Daddy, and Steve had arrived in his mother’s car. Would we have continued dating? Would we have gone past like liked into “I think I love you”? Would we now have children? I’m picturing the scene. Steve and I and our three children, following each other down the road on increasingly smaller Harleys like ducks in a row, wearing our leathers, the wind blowing through our long hair like a model in one of those commercials for hair styling products.
Would life have been a constant adventure on the road? I’ll never know. Now, the scene scratches like in one of those television episodes where an actor breaks the fourth wall and talks to the audience. Actually, I think my life turned out just the way it should have. I love my husband and my two wonderful children, and really I wouldn’t change a thing. I hope Steve is happy and I hope his wife, whomever she may be, loves riding a Harley.