When I was a novice mountain hiker, my dad and I took the wrong path up one of Colorado’s high peaks. Realizing we were out of our league, we depended on the help of a more experienced stranger to get us to the summit and back to the correct trail.
At the time, it rattled me and made me contemplate mortality in a way I wasn’t expecting in my mid-twenties. Years later (and many retellings of our brush with death) we found that we were on an actual trail – others purposefully sought out this particular, more challenging way up the mountain.
It just wasn’t the right trail for us. For my ability level, it seemed out of the realm of possibility that anyone would want such a challenge!
Some things have come up lately and I’ve had to think about choices I’m making for our family. Nothing major, just reevaluations of our season and my involvement in certain commitments. The easy way out is two extremes: Keep on going, feeling resentful or just quit, without brainstorming different possibilities. A lot of me leans toward these extremes. It’s so much nicer taking the path of least resistance.
And sometimes, taking that path is absolutely the best choice. It makes sense and it’s the best for all concerned. Other times, it means messiness and hurt. The more difficult trail is sometimes the better trail.
What I’ve learned from our wayward hike is that for us, it was a wrong turn. For others, our wrong turn was the destination. And in life, I guess that’s how it goes, too. Sometimes a wrong turn can actually be the right path.
Have you ever taken a wrong turn that’s turned out to be the path you need to be on?
Linked with Kate Motaung’s Five Minute Friday, a time to write without editing. Today’s prompt is “path.”