Saturday, April 17, 2010

If I had my whole life to live over again...

...there is only one thing I would do differently.

Honestly, only one thing.  And that, is this:  Back in high school, when I had the opportunity, I would have studied Latin.

That's it.  Latin.  The only thing I would change.  That is not to say that I have lived a life without mistake or misstep.  Only, that I don't believe changing those mistakes or missteps would have resulted in a substantially different outcome.

I learned something from every broken heart, every melodrama, every missed opportunity.  The only thing I learned from not taking Latin, was French, and that has not been useful.

Had I taken Latin, I know for certain that I would be smarter.  I would have gotten higher SAT scores, I would be better at the NY Times Crossword Puzzle, and I might, someday, if she were very tired, beat my mother at Scrabble.

So, is there anything you would change?


  1. Great insight! I couldn't agree more that Latin studies would have been very helpful. I took a year of French and 2 years of Spanish, and I'm quite sure a strong Latin background would have helped immensely. Plus I love languages and etymology, so I think it actually would have been fun. And yes, I am side-stepping your question of what I would have done differently. I'm just going to go with the Latin thing.

  2. The issue is not the lack of Latin but the lack of any Grammar delivered systematically. So that you can as one was able in Latin, cross into English Spanish or whatever.

  3. I am not one to reflect on such things. I have it good here at The Glen.

    I did take French and found it to be VERY useful when I traveled France but that was twenty five years ago and rarely use it now. Wish I new Spanish now!

    Latin huh? Never to late to take a class.

  4. Funnily enough - I've wished that I could have studied Latin too. Then one would have a head start learning many languages as well as understanding the roots of many of those in the English Language. I can't say that it is my only regret though - I wish!!

  5. When I homeschooled my kids we had a box of 100 cards with Latin and Greek root words (I'm sure I still have that box somewhere) that we studied daily. I found it really interesting and the kids still find that bit of knowledge useful, I think. That was all the classical language we did, though.
    If I had to live my life over again? There are many, many things I would have done differently in my late teens, but as they say, "Youth is wasted on the young." If anything, those mistake-ridden years humbled me, and made me more compassionate, which I'm sure I needed.

  6. I wouldn't mind taking high school over again entirely. At least the education part. I was of the thought that high school didn't matter much. It was like pre-life and the important stuff was waiting for me in college.

    I never took Latin but I did take Spanish. And I still managed to beat your mother at scrabble. :-) ...only with you to distract her.

  7. Hey Tracey, awesome blog and great question. Have to say the main thing I would change is I wouldn't act scared in high school. I still would have felt scared, but shouldn't have shown that I was. It made me a target and stopped me from doing things I should have done.
    As far as learning a language goes, I took Spanish in high school and never used it. Now I am learning conversational Creole from the Haitians at work. They get a huge kick out of teaching me and hearing me speak it. And I figure, if I have willing teachers, why not take advantage of it? Plus it has really helped me make a connection so it isn't an us and them thing at work too.

  8. Hmm...maybe I should have said "If I could change only one thing about my past..." because I made plenty of mistake and like Caroline mentioned (Welcome, Caroline!) there are times in my life that I would have been a lot better with a different attitude. I have not lived my life perfectly. But I have learned many lessons and I am very happy with where I ended up.

    Besides, even if I had not dated looser #1, I would probably have fallen for looser #2, or some other scenario where a different choice would not have resulted in a different outcome.