Watching the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees last week, as it showed their life in pictures when they were young and starting out, I wondered what would their lives have been like if they had taken a different road. They described lean and risky years in their humble beginnings. Nobody was a born musician and everyone has to start somewhere, even Dolly. Everyone had to be brave and step out of their comfort zone and take a path that wasn’t quite as certain as trades or colleges would have been.
As I sat there watching and listening, I began to wonder what would MY Life have looked like had I taken a different road. What if I had taken a more uncertain path than medicine?
In the fall of 1980, I wanted to be a war journalist. It seemed like an exciting way to enjoy writing and traveling. What could be a better path for me?
Shortly after completing some classes, I started looking at what sort of money journalists made. And soon it turned out to be what sort of money they didn’t make.
After seeing that my dream wouldn’t exactly afford me the lifestyle I wanted, I changed majors to medicine and the rest is history; my history.
I took the safe road because I wanted guaranteed security.
I wasn’t a risk-taker.
Risk-takers are those that despite the possilbe outcomes, follow that unsafe road. Sometimes it leads them to fame and fortune and standing ovations and induction into the hall of fame. Other times, it leaves them stranded on the side of the road wishing they’d take the safe road and become a plumber with a guaranteed good salary.
Having safely maneuvered my road in medicine and taken the first possible final exit (exit 60), do I regret taking the safe road? Nah. It was a great road that was paved with a lot of good things, people, and opportunities. There were certainly bumps and breaks in the concrete. A few bridges were missing sometimes, but it was still the safe road in life for me and served me and my family well.
However, now continuing my journey that took me on a different path off of exit 60, I do wonder sometimes had I decided to eschew the idea of the possibility of not having much income, taken the risky road, and become a war correspondent, where would I be now?
Or would I even be now at all?
One thing is certain about the roads and paths we decide to take in life; they’re a much quicker route than you would expect.
So this little blog is wrapped around the thought that whichever road you take in life, you bust it wide open. You make the best of it and you laugh the most you can. You cry when needed. You jump your happy ass over the cracks and missing bridges.
But in between the laughter and crying, we are challenged to enjoy this journey, even when we don’t want to.
Because whatever the path is that you’ve chosen, the safe or the risky rock star path, I can assure you as I look at my aging hands (that once were young and more nimble and free of wrinkles) typing this blog,
that your path has most certainly been a very fast track.
That’s the best that I can tell about it,
Absolutely agree with everything you said, and especially the fact that it is a fast track. Enjoy it as much as possible.
The older ones told us that when we were young, now here we are the older ones telling the younger ones. It’s a great life tho! Merry Christmas to you and your family. Tell your sweet mama I said hi.