Life’s like a road that you travel on
When there’s one day here and the next day gone
Sometimes you bend and sometimes you stand
Sometimes you turn your back to the wind
Life is a Highway, Tom Cochrane
It was a rainy day, but we decided to take a little Sunday drive off the beaten path after a good meal. As we drove, I looked at all the side roads and started wondering where some lead. Then I thought about life and how it is so much like those roads.
Every road has a beginning and an end, and they all lead somewhere. Maybe to a better place and to somewhere you feel more at home, or quite possibly in a direction you are not happy with. And sometimes, it leads you in a circle and you end up back where you started.
Some come to a crossroads and some to a “T”. Some are well maintained, others are shoddy. Some are long and some are short. Some are twisty and some poker straight. There are town streets with stop lights, 4-lane highways with a fast pace, 2-lane country roads that twist and turn and dirt roads, which gives you a chance to slow down.
If you think about it, one or more of these roads can represent different parts of your life.
After high school, while still living in the country, I would drive my friends around the back roads getting them lost. They were not from “my neck of the woods” and they never knew where we would end up. I chuckled inside every time they would say Where ARE we? I was always so confident knowing I knew what was at the end of the road we were traveling on.
In my early twenties, I moved into an apartment in “town”. Being a person who deals with change easily, I adapted to living on the main street. I dealt with such things as parking issues and noise at all hours. Knowing it was a temporary arrangement made it easier to bear for a couple years and I knew the streets well from attending high school there.
After 4 years, I moved a couple miles North and made my home in a village, aptly named “Hometown”. My tolerance of change helped a great deal in adjusting to a new place again. I thought of it as my home for the 16 years I lived there, and I learned quickly to navigate the streets and side roads. It was a nice area, better than town living, but I still wasn’t content.
I came full circle and returned to my childhood neighborhood 20 years after leaving. The two-lane roads, open fields and fresh air made my homecoming sweet. I feel the most at home here. I feel comfortable.
You can’t travel two roads at one time and each one of those roads, or paths I took, was my choice. I don’t feel that living those other places was wrong for me. It was just where I was supposed to be at that time in my life.
But do you ever wonder what would your life be like if you took a different path? I have, at times. Not for wanting to change anything, but because I am a curious person by nature. I tend to think What If? What if I chose to finish college after high school? What would I be doing? Where would I be living? I still could go to college, but instead of a 4-lane highway through school, it would be more like a dirt road filled with potholes. Achievable, just a little tougher at my age.
“If you don’t like the road you’re on, start paving another one”. – Dolly Parton
At first, your choice may have seemed the most attractive option compared to the other roads that stretched out in front of you. Then as you traveled along, you came to realize you could have made a better decision. Although you can’t turn back time, it is never too late to change the road you are traveling. You are never stuck with going in one direction all your life. If you are not happy with where you are in life, make a change.
There are many roads on a map and they lead in different directions. Next time you are on a Sunday drive, take a left instead of a right and see where it leads.