For my Sister: Everything Happens for a Reason

Yesterday, I had a phone conversation with my younger sister. It was her 25th birthday and we haven’t seen each other for 7 years or so — yes, life is hard.

She now has 4 kids, whom she loves so much. And I can’t help but wonder how she managed to get through her life. They live within the premises of their church. Her husband, whom I first met as a drummer, is now a missionary. I didn’t expect that.


While listening to her stories and reminiscing our childhood memories, I could see how she has matured as a person and a loving mother. I’m proud of her. I wish I could borrow her grit and positivity to carry on with my life. She’s an inspiration.

After a series of joyful memories, she started sharing her regrets being a young mom, which I understand — most young mothers feel that way. But good to hear, her positivity overlaps the regrets. I know she’s fighting it.

I told her that regrets, though normal, are pointless. I shared my perspective. The story goes like this:

Given your life right now, remember all the good things happened in the last 7 years (or even 10 years). Change one thing that happened 7 years ago, for example, your early motherhood. Do you think you could still experience the same good things that happened in the last 7 years? What about the people you’ve met and shared memorable experience? The lessons you’ve learned? The places you visited? The love you received? Same goes to your kids.

“Everything happens for a reason,” I told her. What you’ve become and where you are right now may not be the same if a different thing happened 7 years ago. Even if we go back and follow a different route, we will always have regrets — we’ll always think that the other path is better.

Life, I believe, is a journey of choices and decision-making. When it comes to making choices, anyone may make mistakes. And that’s okay. Nobody knows what lies ahead. Whether you choose the right or wrong decision, it doesn’t matter. What matters is you learned something from it.

There was an awkward silence for a few seconds. And then she agreed wholeheartedly. While writing, I remember her gentle voice and spontaneous laughter. I’m happy she’s doing good. We’ll see each other, soon…