The Crossroads of Life

Note: This is a rambling article and probably not worth a read. I was going through a point in my life and just needed to write how I was feeling.

There’s no denying that 2020 was a rough year for most people, including me. There were a lot of things in the year that I neglected or ignored just because it was easy while also dealing with the effects of the pandemic. Both my physical and mental health were largely ignored because it was easier to mask it with substances or distractions. It’s easier to mask it than to deal with it, and sometimes that’s okay. Sometimes that is what you just need to do to get temporarily get through to the next day.

The problem with temporary solutions though is that they have this problem of often becoming permanent ones. The longer that it goes on the easier it is to just self medicate or distract than it is to address what is really the problem. The actual solutions start moving further and further into being too difficult to address and perpetuating the continuous negative feedback loop to avoid it.

The interesting thing though is, as you transverse down this path, life has a tendency to bring you to crossroads. They can be hard to identify sometimes, subtle little signs here and there that are so easy to miss. Sometimes they are obvious but one path is rocky and over grown and the other is smooth and inviting. Then sometimes you are just trucking along so hard that you just blow right through it.

It’s easy to choose the easy path – it wouldn’t be called the easy path if it wasn’t. Sometimes though, you really need to stop and look at both paths that life is presenting to you. You really need to sit and mull over the choices you are presented. Sure the easy path looks good now, but maybe it’s just because you can’t see further down the road to understand where it’s going to lead much further down – and it’s very likely not a place you want to be.

I feel that’s where I am at after last year, sitting at a crossroads looking down the easy path – the comfortable one I’ve continuously followed. The one that I feel I know so well. But it’s different this time. In the distance of it I see the sky darkening. The comfort of it weakening and a subtle tinge of apprehension in my heart.

It’s at this point, at this crossroads, I’ve decided it’s time to go down the other path. The one filled with rocks and trees, the one I have been avoiding to go down because of fear. I know it will be difficult and treacherous at times, but most things worthwhile in life are.

So don’t be afraid when life gives you a crossroads to sit for a second and look at both directions. Maybe right now the easy path is just the one you need to take – that’s okay. But be on guard for when the allure of the easy route is just hiding the difficulties further down the road.