Taking the Wrong Path

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.

Quandary 022

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.”

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7 thoughts on “Taking the Wrong Path

  1. It’s good to be aware of your ability, know if you can succeed on your own or with support and when to make changes to seek out the best trail for you.

  2. Annie, great post! I liked what you said about how the wrong path for me, may be the perfect path for someone else. Such a good reminder! God has created each of us uniquely, and He has a perfect plan for each of our lives. Each of our paths will look different. This is a good reminder for me not to come to assumptions or conclusions about things too quickly. 🙂

    1. It’s hard to not compare, isn’t it? I’m learning again and again (and again!) that my path is my own. It intersects and follows others’ paths, but they’re not all the same.

  3. I love this, Annie; it mirrors an experience I had in the desert east of San Diego, when I wanted to bag a peak and took what seemed to be a straightforward trail. One that nearly killed me, and I was an experienced hiker and mountaineer.

    May I add that your blog has become a go-to place for wisdom that I can use in my life? Your writing is more than awesome, and your understanding goes beyond that.

    #1 at FMF this week.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2016/09/your-dying-spouse-201-send-me-fmf.html

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