As we approach the early spring months, many resolutions that we made at the beginning of the year have not been realized. This may cause us to have the SCW guilt. The more conscientious we are, the greater our depression and feelings of failure.
By now, I guess you wonder what the SCW stands for? Well, brace yourself…hold on the something secure, because I do not want to be guilty of making you feel guilty and depressed. The meaning of SCW is…are you ready? Then, close your eyes and open them up slowly. This maneuver will soften the blow and the meaning of SCW.
It means…SHOULD-A….COULD-A…and WOULD-A. Yes, you SHOULD-A done that, you COULD-A done this and you WOULD-A done a lot of things and didn’t.
Just let us explore a few of the SCWs:

I SHOULD-A fed the birds, especially in the winter when the ground was covered with snow.
I SHOULD-A been kinder to my neighbor who lives next door and I don’t even know her name.
I SHOULD-A given more money to my church or to charity.
I SHOULD-A called or visited my mother more often.
I SHOULD-A stopped playing Lotto, looking for a fast fix.
I SHOULD-A torn up my credit card.
I SHOULD-A attended a weight-reducing program and began yoga.
I SHOULD-A shared my desert after a gut-busting meal.
I SHOULD-A sprayed for roaches.
I SHOULD-A washed the dishes that caused the roaches.
I SHOULD-A answered the door when a Jehovah’s Witness rang the bell on Sunday morning when I was trying to get to church.

Is that enough SHOULD-As? Are you depressed? Feeling guilty? Well, lets see how you handle the COULD-As:

I COULD-A used birth control pills to prevent my fifth pregnancy.
I COULD-A gone to the PTA meetings at least once since my child isn’t doing well in school.
I COULD-A stopped smoking before I had breathing trouble.
I COULD-A stopped eating all those greasy spareribs, smothered pork chops, salt herring and bagels with cream cheese before I developed the overhanging belly, hypertension and diabetes.
I COULD-A had my yearly mammography (breast exam).
I COULD-A had my prostate gland checked, including a PSA.
I COULD-A gotten up from my set on the bus or train and given it to an elderly person.
I COULD-A smiled and said hello to my next-door neighbor.
I COULD-A paid more attention to my spiritual self rather than my material, insecure self.

Have you had enough COULD-As? We could go on and on but even I am getting depressed. So, let’s get on with the WOULD-As:

I WOULD-A not driven my car after a few drinks and gotten into an accident and had my license suspended.
I WOULD-A let a stranger have the parking space, before we had an argument, which let to a fist fight and getting arrested.
I WOULD-A counted to 10 before telling-off my best friend, who happens to be my wife.
I WOULD-A spent more time meditating.
I WOULD-A gone back to school if I knew it would take so long getting a job.
I WOULD-A bought a smaller car if I knew that gas would top $4 a gallon.
I WOULD-A not bought that house that I couldn’t afford.
I WOULD-A become computer literate.
I WOULD-A treated my children and grandchildren better, since they have to take care of me in my old age.
I WOULD-A changed my underwear if I had known that I was going to fall out in the street and have to be taken to the hospital and undressed.
I WOULD-A brushed my teeth, if I knew I was going to meet the girl of my dreams that day.
I WOULD-A tried to love all of God’s children after I was convinced that there is a heaven and hell.

I guess we all will continue to fall into that guilt trap of SHOULD-A, COULD-A and WOULD-A while we live on this planet. However, since you are still breathing and moving, lets keep hope alive and pray that the next six months will benefit all of humanity!

Garry Pierre-Pierre

Garry Pierre-Pierre is a Pulitzer-prize winning, multimedia and entrepreneurial journalist. In 1999, he left the New York Times to launch the Haitian Times, a New York-based English-language publication serving the Haitian Diaspora. He is also the co-founder of the City University Graduate School of Journalism‘s Center for Community and Ethnic Media and a senior producer at CUNY TV.

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