This is an excellent question, and one I was only thinking on a day or so ago. How far back would I go? And then I began to realize that every single step of my life, the way it was led, has brought me to the point I am at at this very moment and I realize am pleased at what and who I have become.
There was a time I thought I might have changed my life from forty-one onwards; the first forty-one years were very adventurous and I gained much life experience. But then, at forty-one, I began to hone my communicative skills: public speaking, storytelling, creative writing to a much greater extent. Perhaps so I could tell others of those first forty-one years.
I think we follow a sort of syn curve over our lives. We rise up through the curve creating more an more actual experiences - if we can- then we begin a descent away from the life of action to the life of thinking, consolidation and interpretation. We're after meaning.
For me, my meaning comes from a perpetual seeking for more self-knowledge, and the satisfaction of being able to tell others of what I have found.