I’ve pondered and wondered endless nights wishing I could turn back time. I used to do that a lot. More accurately, I still do. What is it about time and our actions that make us want to do things all over again? I mean, we know we have one chance in this life. Our grandparents and parents are testament that we truly have one life to live. It is one life to make use of yourself or one life to make a fool of everything.
As youth is spent on the young and regret is bestowed on the aged, we are left with unresolved decisions and missed opportunities that most of us won’t care to admit. That’s part of life, I guess. The shame, regret, and the wishing. By God, the wishing. I wish I could have done this, or that, or whatever it is that you’re wishing for.
I recall a movie I watched a couple of weeks back entitled About Time. I’m sure some of you might have watched this. This is a recent movie and it also stars Rachel McAdams. I first thought that this was just going to be about love and the power of going back in time to correct things so that love could work. You know, typical Hollywood romantic comedy hoopla.
Sure, there were moments when the main character used his power to go back in time to change his relationship with a girl, but for the most part, the movie was essentially about life and the choices we make. It was about having the ability to go back in time, but sometimes choosing not to because some things have to happen. They have to happen in order for us to grow. It all sounds cheesy but they have to happen.
Towards the end of the movie, the main character’s father gave him the ultimate advice regarding time travel. He suggested that Tim (the lead guy) should live each day twice. Instead of changing what’s going to happen on the second day (like what most of us might do), the father said that he shouldn’t change anything and just observe the same day on a different light. That’s the secret to time traveling he says.
This profound realization got me thinking: would I do the same? Given the chance, would I live through the same day twice? What about the bad days? Can I honestly live through a shitty day again? Reliving the same day brought about appreciation and understanding for Tim. It’s not just the fact that you know what’s going to happen but it’s more to the fact that there are certain things you don’t notice when you go through the daily routines of life. We get caught up in work, family, relationships, news, people, and so on, that we often take for granted the things that can bring smiles on our faces.
However, even though this might seem the secret of all secrets as to how to live a meaningful life if you ever had the chance to have the power to go back in time, Tim pushes it even further. After living days twice, noticing all the beautiful small things in life became habitual. Eventually, he didn’t need to go back in time anymore. He didn’t need to change his past. He didn’t need to stop to look and appreciate at the little things. He lived each day to its utmost potential. It wasn’t cheesy, it wasn’t cliché, it seemed like the most perfect and natural thing to do.
I guess I have to stop wishing and just keep on living.
What would you do if you had the power to go back in time?