[ 2 min read ]
Two days ago I spoke with my mother over the phone. Recently she came back from Ukraine where she and her friend had spent two weeks. They stayed in Truskavets, a city in the west of Ukraine, near the border with Poland, famous for its mineral springs. As both ladies are in their early eighties they wanted to benefit from this place’s healing waters. Mother told me that everything was fine (although all food was horrible) until the end of week one. In the beginning of the second week my mother started to have heart problems (something she had never had before) and as a result of this she spent a lot of time and money at local doctors. Already in her home town she continues the treatment (it’s still too early to say anything).
There was one thing she said during our conversation which is very characteristic of us people.
She said “Had I decided to spend only one week there, the heart problems would have occurred at the time when I was already at home and I could have gone to my local doctors, I would have understood everything they would have said to me (not every tenth word), and I wouldn’t have spent so much money on Ukrainian doctors.”
And I said to her. “That’s not true. You don’t know what would have happened had you decided to spend only one week there. You cannot know if the heart problems would have occurred at the same time (if they would have occurred at all). If one thing could have been different, why not everything?”
We (human beings) can’t figure out the future and we’re pissed that it is this way, so, time and again, we delude ourselves that at least we can figure out the past and we say that if B had happened instead of A, D would be true instead of C. This is bullshit. This is our wishful thinking.
the lives of this many people would have been saved
she wouldn’t have died
he wouldn’t have suffered
my parents would still be together
our country wouldn’t be in crisis
And so on and so forth. We’re pretty damn good at bullshitting ourselves.