What if what was was what if?

I literally fell asleep last night trying to answer this beauty pageant question from a video I saw on Facebook: "What if what was was what if?" I woke up this morning, phone in hand, saw my draft, and deleted the entire post.

But the damn question just won't leave me alone. I'm reminded of the time I was on a roll, posting my own answers to the final 10 questions of the Miss Universe that year. That wit, I'm afraid, has escaped me.

But what if nga what was was what if?

Then again, aren't we already living in that kind of conditional? All the moments of our past carry with it what ifs: We pick one out of many paths, and in picking that one, immediately step away from other possibilities.

So, let me try to answer the question, as I'm quite obsessed.

What if what was was what if? In the poem "The Road Not Taken," Robert Frost makes fun of his friend, the poet Edward Thomas. When they went on walks, Edward, ever indecisive, would often end up saying they should've taken the other path. But all paths are essentially the same in that when you take them, you simply took them, and it is your mind that creates the story you tell about having taken that path.

So, if what was was what if, I think I'd still be telling a story of how all my past choices led me here. I'd try to make sense of all the detours, the U-turns from abandoned routes or dead ends, the moments I made the wrong turns, and the times I meandered or stayed lost. Then I'd say it's been glorious, it's been tragic, it's been hopeless, it's been lovely, and it's been fun. But most importantly, it's been real.

Thank you for that confusing, sad, but very human question.