Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda

You know how people always talk about living life without regrets?

I find that a somewhat impossible task. Here are things I may always regret:

  • Not going to nationals for Academic Decathlon in 2002. We were so close – if only I had done a little better…
  • Thinking freshman year would be easy and I could just take it easy like in high school. Those grades are stuck. They’re on my transcript despite redoing several of them.
  • Selling my first car.
  • Missing out on the great duplex deal we almost got with Ben & Krista. I’m still irritated that the lady’s husband gave away the contract, within an hour of the lady telling us we’d almost definitely get it…communication is important! Again, we were so close!!
  • Losing (somewhere) my favorite shirt and favorite skirt. I bought them both right before the Romgi and I got married, and they both disappeared by our first anniversary. Even after we moved to this apartment I kept hoping they’d turn up somewhere.
  • Unintentionally murdering the lizards.
  • Deciding not to go to Korea to teach English. It’s probably for the best, because if we had gone, I’d be flying back to the US at 7 or 8 months pregnant, which may not even be kosher…but I feel like that was my chance to do something awesomely adventurous, and I turned it down. Also the money was really tempting.
  • Losing the fish platter!
  • Eating all of the Slim Jims…I need some more…

What are your regrets?


Fee. Lings.

When the Romgi and I got back from California last Christmas, we found our two lizards both dead because of a thermostat malfunction. It heated the apartment continuously for about 48 hours. The Romgi was devastated and asked me if I could take care cleaning up and getting rid of the bodies. I felt remarkably detached – a little bit sad that we had no pets, but overall alright.

Over the next few months I became moderately depressed, and after a lot of thought I realized that it started because of the lizards dying. The Romgi thoughtfully got me a new pet rat for Valentine’s Day (and even a friend for the rat), which helped me feel like life was meaningful again. Silly of me, isn’t it, to be so swayed by small animals (both reptilian and rodent)? Anyway, I was able to deal with the lizards’ death and move on.

Since I’ve been pregnant, though, I keep agonizing over the lizards. Some nights I can’t sleep because I feel so guilty. I knew the thermostat was faulty before we left on vacation – why didn’t I ever have the landlord replace it? I thought maybe the Romgi’s instructions about heating the apartment were not clear enough – why didn’t I have him call Ben back and clarify? I was completely aware that the thermostat had been turned on a couple days before we got home – why didn’t I ask Ben if it had been turned off?

I feel like there were so many ways to prevent our pets from being slowly baked to death, and it was my carelessness that caused the tragedy. I desperately miss Mu. I blame myself for his suffering, which must have been intense.

Whether it’s related or not, I’ve also been having nightmares that are increasingly bloody, violent, and gruesome. My best psychoanalysis of the situation is that I’m worried about not being a good mother for my baby when I couldn’t take care of Mu, and my dreams reflect the growing anxiety about something terrible happening to the Romgi, me, or the baby.

But most of all, I really wish Mu were still around…I’m sorry, Mu…