Illustration: Life

Erma Bombeck once wrote about what she would do differently If I Had My Life to Live Over: "I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded. I would have eaten the popcorn in the 'good' living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace. I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather ramble about his youth. I never would have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed. I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage. I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.

"I would have cried and laughed less while watching television and more while watching life. I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I wasn't there for the day. I never would have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn't show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime. Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd have cherished every moment realizing that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle. When my kids kissed me impetuously, I never would have said, 'Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.' There would have been more 'I love you's' and more 'I'm sorry's,' but mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute...look at it and really see it...live it! And never give it back."