When I run on the treadmill, I have a TV and DVD player down there and have been watching Star Trek: The Next Generation over the last few years on and off. I recently saw an episode called Tapestry and it really made me stop and think.
In this episode, Picard is killed, or dying at the beginning, pulled into Sick Bay. As he fades, we cut to a scene with Q where Picard is told he’s dead. The story goes on to give Picard a chance to change his life, taking him back to the time when he’s newly graduated and just before he’s stabbed in the heart. Picard shows some regret that he started a fight then, and had to receive an artificial heart. You can guess that he relives the scene, but doesn’t get stabbed, resulting in a history he doesn’t like.
As I watched this over a few days, I kept thinking about my life, and regrets. Would I want to go back, with different knowledge, and change anything? I know I have some regrets, some actions that I’m not proud of, but I wouldn’t change anything. The place that I am in today is because of all the choices I made in the past. The good ones, the bad ones, they’ve contributed to the person that I am today.
I’m not a fatalist, but I have an acceptance of life as it is. I strive to do good, to be better, but I understand I’ll make mistakes and I’m frail. I do the best I can at each moment, knowing that sometimes that isn’t my best, and that I might change how I view the world as I grow and learn.
The tapestry of my life is somewhat woven, with more being added each day, but I wouldn’t go back and change anything. If I died today, I would accept that I’ve lived a good life, without wishing for the chance to change my past.