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What makes me yearn for the ones who got away is that they have the key to the "me" that came before this "me." There's something terribly romantic about that -- about being loved before I was a wife, a mother, had experiences that shaped my identity and changed me. I wonder who I might have been and I think a bit of that wondering is stored in those people who were lost.


My mom has these kinds of stories. She was lively and popular and had many "beaus." My father and she divorced after an awful marriage, so the stories are especially poignant for her.

She always ends with, "but then I wouldn't have had you girls..."


I have the could have beens from college. I'm not sure where they are now, but I think back nostalgically and wonder what could have been with different choices on both sides. Not to say I'm not happy with where I am, but well, it could have been...

Sprite's Keeper

Funny, I don't have any ones that got away. Thank goodness. I didn't see much in the guys I dated until I met John and then all the other stuff fell right away.


Great insight, Gretchen. A shame we don't have the opportunity to live our lives on different timelines with that "one who got away." But as I tell all of those lucky women (most who are currently great FB friends of mine now), "You would have had the great opportunity to have been my first ex-wife."

The ones that got away were allowed to get away for a reason. Except for those four women at 2100 San Gabriel Blvd ---- they never responded to my group proposal letter.


One of my One's Who Got Away is now a director at the huge corporation where my other half works. Dude got his PhD in his twenties and has been on the fast track ever since. Four kids and a coupla BMWs. I would have hated that life.

It is fun to look 'em up on crackbook. Awesome post. :-)


I have a "one that I left" instead of a "one that got away". My mother, however, told me a story of "the one that got away" just before she passed. It sounded so sweet, but just like Mommy, I don't think it ever would have worked. He was from a different place, a different way of life (she was a NYer, just like Mommy, too). My Aunt actually stalked the poor young man to tell him to stop putting "pipe dreams" into her little sister's head.


Not so much the one who got away (that would have been Beloved if I hadn't snared him so adroitly :P), but missed opportunities for adventure when I was younger. Like the time the MUCH older man with money asked me to go to Las Vegas with him for the weekend when I was 18, "no strings attached." I didn't believe it then, and I don't believe it now, but what the 18-year-old girl was too frightened to do, the 48-year-old woman regrets not doing. Ah, well...

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