The length of my commute in the mornings is directly proportionate to whether I leave the house at a certain time. A quiet 20 minute commute can become 45 minutes if a series of random events occur. Often, I listen to music, which in turn can remind me of a long ago memory. Memory is a funny thing to me. I have terrible, we are talking non-existent almost, short-term memory. That might be why I wear so much black, I can't remember which outfit I wore the day before and this insures that I won't wear the same thing for a week or at least no one will know if I do! A thought may pop into my head only to pop right back out. So what interests me so much is if I can't remember five minutes ago, why in the universe and beyond can I remember every mistake, every embarrassment, every dumb thing I ever said or did.
I sort of have a theory about that. I am thinking that it goes back to a time when your very survival depended on remembering critical mistakes. You forget to put the fire out and your straw hut is history. Turn your back on a big hairy animal and you are dinner. Get lost, no street signs or GPS to get you home and you could possibly stumble off a cliff. I am sure there are a whole host of psychological reasons and theories as to why you remember some things so much and why you can bury other memories that are too painful to exist in your mind. As I am riding in this morning I am thinking about the movie "It's a Wonderful Life". Have you ever considered how different things would be if you were never born? Or how different things would be if you made different choices along the way. Would you go back and change any of those choices? I watched the movie "The Butterfly Effect" several years ago...one person making different choices with different consequences each time. I rank it as pretty horrific, each choice seemingly good at the time, just makes the end result worse each time. Juxtaposed with my own life...if I made a different choice of a marriage partner the first time, I would not have the same two absolutely wonderful daughters, grandchildren and the husband I will be married to forever! I would not be as compassionate and tolerant of mistakes made by others. This is just one example, there are many situations where changing one aspect changes everything else.
My understanding of "The Butterfly Effect" is simply if a butterfly flaps his wings in China, all the consequences of that action would affect the weather in New York. Everything we do has a consequence and it ripples away from us. Change one thing, change everything! "What we do in life, echoes in eternity."
May your choices and memories NOT keep you up at night!