The weekly photo challenge this week is a tough one. The word is “regret.” I looked through all my photo archives and I found a few photos that would maybe resemble the emotion “regret.” But, not really. Regret is a complex emotion, not easily recognizable in a photo because it could look like so many other emotions. Regret is pensive, but pensive is not “regret.” Regret can be sad, but sad is not “regret.”
You see what I mean?
Regret is a multifaceted emotion – layered with either a tinge or a great deal of sadness, or anger, or longing, or remorse.
Regret may consist of angst, too. Regret rears its elusive head over things we did, or didn’t do; things left unsaid; things left undone after it’s too late to change the things we did. Generally. saying “I’m sorry,” cures the regret. Well, in fiction and other fairy tales that’s true.
Regret also takes the form of wishing we could turn the clock back to redo or undo things. (If only life had the same “undo” or “redo” button that Microsoft Office and other software has.) Wouldn’t it be nice if that”Easy” button in the Staples televisions commercials really worked?
So, I found a couple of photos that captured an element of regret. I have a photo of a butterfly whose wings are badly damaged and who is clearly close to death. But, when I saw that photo tonight what I felt was sadness and then I realized I regretted taking the photo.
Another photo I looked was of my niece with a sad and pensive look with tears forming in her eyes. She wasn’t feeling regret, she was having one of those meltdowns that all kids have when they don’t get to do what they want to do. It wasn’t regret. Does a 6-year-old feel regret?
And then I had a picture of a Florida Panther that was really cute. He has his forehead between his paws, down on the grass as if he’s trying to scratch the top of his head on the ground. And I almost chose that photo because it was as close as I thought I would get to embodying regret. Of course, I know the panther was just giving his head a good scratch in the grass so it really didn’t look regretful. And after all, the more anthropomorphically realistic our animal photos are, the more we love them – the funnier they are. And funny is fun but it doesn’t say “regret” plus the photo is a bit blurry – horrors!
So, I kept looking for photos and nothing said “regret” to me. I looked up the dictionary meaning, too:
1. To feel sorry, disappointed, or distressed about.2. To remember with a feeling of loss or sorrow; mourn.(verb)To feel regret.
(noun)1. A sense of loss and longing for someone or something gone.2. A feeling of disappointment or distress about something that one wishes could be different.3. regrets A courteous expression of regret, especially at having to decline an invitation.
I was about ready to skip this photo challenge when I remembered what I’d bought tonight at the grocery store!!!!! And I said, out loud, BINGO! Talk about regret…. There’s guilt there, too….. Double whammy.
Mind you, I bought this in the grocery store tonight after I’d had a HUGE steak dinner at Outback Steakhouse.
After all, they say, it’s best NOT to go to the grocery store on an empty stomach, right? Well I went to Publix grocery store, still full as a whale, and look what I bought and what I immediately began to eat?!!!!!
So, here’s my chocolate chip-yummy-frosting-early-valentine-to-myself-definition of regret…. 🙂