But only sometimes.
"In some ways I wish I would have done it that way so I didn't have had to go through all the growing pains and uncertainty of life," says the 36-year-old singer-songwriter. "But at the same time I have ownership of all that time, I have ownership of all the trials and how difficult it was. That was mine, and I saw it and I felt the pain and I felt the excitement."
Right now, Green is feeling the excitement. He has a new CD, What I'm For, his 11th album overall and sixth on a major label. The first single, "Let Me," has been on a steady march up the charts.
And yet he seems like a fellow who's having a good day at the track and is afraid he'll jinx himself if he makes too much of it.
"We shall see," he says to a suggestion that "Let Me" could become the biggest hit of his career, topping 2003's "Wave on Wave."
The San Antonio-born and Waco-bred Green built a following back home in Texas as a roots rock act before establishing himself as a mainstream country singer with "Wave on Wave."
But he's struggled to match that early success with radio, and now takes a broader view of his music and his life.
"I'd love to see every record I have go to No. 1, but that's not really the point," Green says. "I have a great job. I'm a career musician. That's pretty hard to come by ... This is a hard business to get into and harder still to be successful at if you're in it."
For the new disc on BNA Records, Green brought in Dann Huff, who has helped craft albums for Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts and Faith Hill.
"I knew I wanted the guy who was doing Keith Urban's records," he says. "He makes a record that is true to the artist he is working with. Rascal Flatts has a totally different sound than Keith Urban, and that sounds totally different from Faith Hill. He doesn't put out Dann Huff records."
On the lead track, "Footsteps of Our Fathers," Green, the father of two children, sings, "We are walking in the footsteps of our fathers, standing in the shadows of our mothers, trying to learn from those who came before us."
It's a leap from the beer-soaked songs he sang as a younger man.
"I'm experiencing a 5-year-old and a 2-year-old now," says Green, who grew up one of 10 children in a blended family. "I'm watching America grow up and watching the world around me change. There's a lot of other stuff to write about."
Country music is catching on. Stoney Richards, music director at Y108 in Pittsburgh, says, "I've known Pat quite a few years now, and I think this album is closer to who Pat is. The first song is good, but there are so many songs on there that are even better."
Green is hoping for the best, but if he's forever remembered as the guy from Texas who sang "Wave on Wave," he's OK with that.
"I'm a faithful person. This is where I'm supposed to be," he says.