June 3, 2009

new directions


It's funny how when you wish for something and the opportunity presents itself for that wish to be realized, suddenly the possibility is terrifying. I have been wanting change, hoping for it, imagining ways to make it happen. But the idea of change has always been something that would happen later, somewhere down the road. Not now.

The possibility of living in a new town, doing something completely new, starting all over from scratch exhilarates me and scares the bejeebers out of me at the same time. There are so many what ifs running through my head. What if we can't sell our house? What if the weather is terrible? What if we can't make enough money? What if it's too rural and lonely?

On the other hand are visions of living in a small northern California town in a cottage by the sea with an ocean view and a woodstove for heat, living simply, eating locally-grown organic veggies, being 2-4 hours away from some of my dearest friends, and having more time to write and play and explore. My pulse quickens just thinking about it.

I have learned all too well that a dream realized never quite turns out the way I hoped. There are all sorts of unforeseen consequences (positive and negative) that come bundled along with the package. You realize that everything has a price and you make the best of it. And then you wish a little more carefully next time and keep your fingers crossed.

So there is a possibility of a new direction. I approach it with trepidation and anticipation. Deep down, I know change is good. It's time. The what ifs I imagine are never the ones I really had to worry about anyway. It has been quite awhile since I faced a crossroads. And there is a certain dread I feel in having to choose; one choice precludes the possibility of the other. Each choice leads down an entirely new path that will change how my life unfolds. I think of The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

2 comments:

Evelyn said...

I know, I know, I know!

And what to do? And when to Jump? And the what if, what is, where, and when?

AND how long do I sit indecisive? What do I miss, what do I gain?

I love you!

Your SIS

Marly said...

Mr. Keeting, played by Robin Williams in the movie "Dead Poets Society," used the last line of Mr. Frost's poem when trying to teach his class of 17 year old boarding school boys about swimming against the stream, and "Carpe Deum!" He also quoted Henry David Thorough (spelling?)who said, "Most men live lives of quiet desperation," and told them to not be resigned to that.