to me at least, being afraid of regrets makes perfect sense (much more than most other fears people have) … I, sort of, have the same thing
while I was growing up i suppose, I had more-or-less, normal fears, worries etc…. but, then the 90-s came and by the time I got to being 20 and the war broke out, I have already learned two very important things
One: that no matter what we think or want to believe- our lives can be over in a second- so we better use the time we have since none of us knows will there be a tomorrow
Second: (And this realization was quite a surprise to me at the time) Due to a set of circumstances I am not going to expand on right now, there was this intense period during which 3 times I ended up in situations from which I thought I won’t come out (you know, those that get your life flashing before your eyes) … considering how amazing our brains are, and how quick they work in some circumstances, in all 3 of those cases, my mind, somehow,with all the calculations it was doing at the time also managed to get some processing on the past events. And one thing stuck out… the only things I regretted, at the time, were the things I had a chance to do but I did not…..
this went on afterwards — but the central point never changed- apparently, I regret only the things I had a chance to do but did not take it… And no, I am am sure as hell not a kind of a person who has lead a good decent life- there are many things I should be regretting…. yet, I do not regret anything I did- even the worst of things- at best I would never do them again, but I took them as sort of a school experience- I did I it, I know it… time to move on
whereas “I could have…..” is a kind of regret that stick for life….
there is one more thing I would like to add… but this is my personal view on things
you wrote “ I live my life one way, so that I can maintain the people in my life. But, to live my life freely, the way I believe I was built to live, I’d lose them all.”….
I understand the position very well- I do not know the details- but the sentiment is there.
I will not expand right now- but in my experience, You can never loose the people who truly care about you by expressing yourself and your will. (Again I am talking about the ones who truly care). If anything-everyone ends up being much happier and closer with each other….
So, do not worry — the ones who love you will love you even more — — and the rest… well, you never needed them in the first place