Road less traveled is path to positive change
Updated: June 15, 2012 1:38PM
As a kid, you fool yourself that life offers a level playing field. The candy bar will be divided into equal pieces among your peers and you.
Then the bully kid gnaws off a big chunk of the Hershey’s and sticks out his tongue.
By the time you’re well into your 20s you have a taste of the world, some bitter, some sweet. Life isn’t fair, it never will be. As carefully as you adhere to your life’s road map, there will be detours, crises and challenges.
M. Scott Peck started his popular book, The Road Less Traveled, with this statement: “Accept that life is difficult.”
Peck stressed the importance of discipline, and explained its four facets:
• delaying gratification.
• acceptance of responsibility.
• dedication to the truth.
With typical Van Mom zeal, I have renewed myself to these principles.
Delaying gratification. This meant no chocolate and taking on the garage cleaning, including retiring the Diaper Genie I’d used for my youngest son a decade ago.
Acceptance of responsibility. The laundry kept piling until the dryer yelled it was trapped. Gritting my teeth, I forced myself downstairs to do a two-step with the Tide and Clorox.
Dedication to truth. I could no longer deny my addiction to elastic waistbands and stepped onto the bathroom scale. The resulting shriek sent South American bats from their caves.
Balancing. This meant more than a spin on my ergonomic chair, to remove my rump and rest of my body and get exercising.
Despite my intentions to improve, I’m still falling short. By now, some of my peers have surpassed me in monetary status and I’m glad for them. They worked hard for their successes.
You might say I have taken a different path, an unexpected one fraught with uncertainty, a lot of joy, some melancholy and pain ... and almost always, a dash of absurdity.
Peck based his book title on a famous poem by Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken.”
“Two roads diverged in a wood and I —
I took the one less traveled by.
And that has made all the difference.”
Amen, Robert Frost.