Remorse…….feeling positive regret for something you have done or not done, or perhaps should have done. Or said, or didn’t say, or should have said. To feel remorse is to acknowledge that whatever it was, it was wrong, after the fact. A bad choice of words, a decision that you have made that effected someone else’s life. Negative Regret, the evil twin of Positive Regret, and opposite of remorse is like when a serial killer regrets using a knife instead of a pistol.
Even if you assumed it to be an innocent moment, or the “heat” of the moment, or the correct decision at the time, without the feeling of guilt on your part, if you are normal, remorse comes along for the ride at some point in time. Remorse (different than Positive Regret), is an acknowledgment experienced by normal, or mentally sane people. It turns the original feelings of innocence into guilt, and on its face, turns that into the desire to seek forgiveness.
Not a religious thing, even atheists teach their children, to feel remorse, to say they are sorry, to apologize for their words and/or actions. If a person feels no remorse, he must be Jesus, cause he’s perfect and without sin, right? The few that I have known that feel no remorse are certifiably crazy, and not Jesus. Including a few so-called “Christians”.
We all have times we wish we had not said something to someone, or made a wrong decision. The difference between right and wrong, good and bad, are instilled in us from early childhood. We are taught by everyone we come in contact with, from the moment we are old enough to comprehend. We learn NOT to touch a hot stove. Ouch! We learn the basics, even if our parents haven’t picked up their copy of Dr. Spock’s “The Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care” published in 1946. My mother had a copy. I used to look at the pictures.
I’m grateful, thankful, that I never got into the animal torture/sacrifice thing as a child. I’m also grateful/thankful that my children never experienced the madness of hurting some small animal, just for the twisted emotion of it.
Growing up through childhood, adolescence and puberty, that part of us that is one of our human traits that’s uniquely different from the animal kingdom, is called karma. It is NOT a religious thing at all. It doesn’t depend on what religion you are raised in. Even atheists will purchase a copy of Dr. Spock’s book.
If by time a person is old enough to know better, and he or she has a psychotic need to torture small animals, you know that person is one crazy child, and probably doesn’t do well with other children or teenagers. Looking back, I can remember a few of the crazy ones, like my step-father, and a neighbor kid who loved to torture small animals (who probably ended up on death row).
Here’s the big difference between those two dudes. My step-father’s issues, mentally, were caused by what the Nazi’s did to him physically and mentally when he was imprisoned as an American spy, and what doctors did to him much later on. That dude that enjoyed torturing animals was sick as well, and should have been institutionalized and treated, if there is a treatment available.
Problem is, they didn’t catch it when he was chopping heads off of small animals (without regret), when he was 12 years old or whatever. Notice I said, “without regret”. A child that feels “positive” regret after taking part in tying firecrackers to the tail of a kitten probably isn’t going to participate in that activity again, and he/she will also feel remorse. If that child only has regret that he/she did not tie some firecrackers around that kitten’s neck as well……..well, see the difference?
A person that feels no regret will more than likely repeat the act or activity again whatever that is. Just like a person who is deceitful most of the time. Feeling no regret, that person will continue to lie his ass off. Remember, regret is the acknowledgment or trigger felt by mostly sane people. If you have a friend or family member that never feels regret or remorse, they probably should be getting treatment for whatever their psychosis is.
On the other hand, if you know someone who has suffered from a stroke, or multiple strokes, and you sense or know that there are some abnormal mental issues going on, (aside from the normal issues like slurred speech, partial paralysis, pudding dribbling down his chin), take some time to acknowledge that your father or sister, or brother, is suffering (and in many cases, doesn’t realize it).
That stroke victim, along with family members, may not even realize that he/she has even had a stroke or not and may not experience immediate regret or remorse. My 3rd stroke was obvious to me, my 2nd and 1st, not so obvious.
The stroke victim may have mild physical changes, and major mental issues. Sometimes, the stroke victim may be dealing with paralysis and other major physical issues, and the mental issues go ignored or not recognized. The fact is, a large percentage of stroke victims have mental issues that are not always recognized by family and friends, or medical professionals, because many stroke victims have to concentrate on how to walk again, how to talk, how to swallow their Tapioca pudding,
They are not necessarily in tune with their mental condition. They are re-learning a lot of different life skills, many of which are basic motor skills. Hopefully some medical professional will recognize that your stroke has affected you in many other ways, like my neurologist at Mayo.
My stroke experiences and continuing rehabilitation have been rather interesting as I have been documenting much of what has been going on since January 2016 in the form of an internet blog/website.
Sure, my short-term memory was effected, as well as some basic social skills. My speech, although slightly effected, has improved a great deal.
The greatest and most positive change since my last stroke, is the ability to really live my life with love towards all of mankind. The karma thing, it’s not a religion, the “Golden Rule”…….It’s as basic as it gets. So, this is not a “Sermon on the Mount”. It is a discussion about mental illness, strokes, and how they can affect the mind and its functions. It’s a reminder that we all could do a better job at loving one another, treating others how we ourselves want to be treated.
Back in late 2015, I had a discussion with the neurologist at Mayo, to find out why I was having difficulty in certain areas of my life, if it could be directly related to having had that last stroke, or one of the previous strokes. The doctor explained that the July 2015 stroke, the most recent one, was in an area that she said, is recognized as the “Management Function” area of the brain.
Which explained the following for me: Lacking thoughts and desires to accomplish even the simplest of things, like keeping the house fairly clean. Running the vacuum, sweeping the kitchen floor, doing simple things that you used to do. Lacking normal ambition. In my case, along with those issues, I also had a much off kilter “moral compass”, which for me, was the lack of indiscretion when it came to adult comedy or jokes, and things that came out of my mouth uncontrollably.
Coupled with what may be, a myriad of mental issues, a stroke victim may also suffer from depression. It doesn’t matter if it’s mild depression, or deep, debilitating, call 911 depression. Depression SUCKS! For me, I have been able to work through most of my depression related issues in a positive fashion.
Writing does help me, so I ALWAYS suggest writing of some kind. Cannabis has helped as well, which for me is a once a week medicine, or usually when I am writing, Hahahahaha.
I also contribute my positive journey of recovery AND discovery, to karma. The basics, the “Golden Rule”. Let’s see how much more remorse you might feel, how much more “Positive” regret you may experience. Change your attitude. Change your actions and reactions. Change from being a “Negative” person, to being a “Positive” person. If you believe that will make you more “Christ-like”, go for it. It’s NOT about “doing good deeds”, it’s not about earning a First-Class ticket to heaven someday. It is about the basics. That’s all.
My mother did raise me to understand right from wrong, and the ability to feel remorse, and “positive” regret came naturally as I grew up. As I look back now, although I have no “negative” regrets, I HAVE felt remorse for many things, it’s just that since my last stroke, I have become more aware just how toxic or negative I was, and the situation was, to my children, and others around me.
I never purposely did or said things that were intentionally hurtful, but I certainly acknowledge things now, i.e. understand how hurtful I really was by the things I did, or didn’t do, and said, or should have said. As an example, my divorce was inevitable, but could have been executed with more compassion, and less selfishness.
As a parent, we all should be aware of our effect on our children’s psyche, when they are little, as they are growing up, and when they are adults. In my case, my mother and father died when I was young, so I didn’t have the experience of two Dr. Spock trained parents raising me. What little childhood I did have up until I turned fifteen, was worthy of two PTSD medals, (you can read about childhood PTSD in earlier posts).
So, you have to add a lot of shit in the negative column even before having multiple strokes at a later age. I have to admit, that in spite of all the negative experiences and memories from my childhood, somehow, most of what my mother taught me, stuck to me as I became an adult.
One last thought on remorse. True remorse does not seek or expect an act of forgiveness on the part of another person. True karma is feeling the remorse, recognizing the cause and effect, expressing that “Positive” regret which has turned itself into genuine “Remorse”.
That’s what causes you to go to your friend, co-worker, spouse or child, and say, “I’m sorry. I recognize that what I said was uncalled for, and I apologize for it”. Don’t say, “Please forgive me”. Your remorse is not begging for forgiveness. You don’t expect “forgiveness” with true karma, but more than likely, the offended person does forgive you. That’s true karma.
So, in conclusion, be aware of conditions other than physical that may be effecting that loved one that has suffered from a stroke. Be patient, be kind, be understanding, and help that person recover as much normalcy as they can.
For those of you that are recuperating from a stroke or multiple strokes, if you are able to, try exercising your mind with writing. Get an electronic writing tablet like I use or laptop computer, or just a paper writing tablet and lots of pens, if you can still control your functions with your hand and brain. If you still enjoy killing things, seek professional help.
Strain: ELMERSGLUE #2, harvested January 12, 2017
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