- Carrie Usmar
The Not So Normal Road
You’re probably wondering what is so special about this road. It’s just another picture of a road. Well it’s special to me. Firstly, I thought it would be a “normal” paved road. On google maps it looked like a regular cut through to 165, and I think I know where 165 is and how I could get home from there. Is that where I want to be? I don’t know. Okay I guess I’m talking local roads over here. But on google maps these roads look legit. Then when you drive down them you realize you’re alone, in the woods, you might pop a tire, you hope your going the right way and not on someone’s property. I passed a man walking. I wondered, where is he going? Is he walking home from work? I don’t see a house in sight. Do people still walk to work anymore?
H is in the back, where are we going mommy? When will we be home? One of my favorites is “What’s HE doing?” (referring to the man walking) Usually he will ask something like this loud so the person he is referring to can hear loud and clear. And I awkwardly explain what they are doing. Are we going home? Crosby is sleeping. Are we on our way home? When will we go to Celia’s school? When will we be home? I have learned the art of tuning this little guy out on my adventures. But I am amused by him and love his curious mind.
Anyway, I’m on this dirt road. My mind is racing. Its not often you drive on dirt roads anymore, by choice. I have all these questions, concerns. I don’t feel any kind of peace driving on it. It’s not what I expected. I think what also scares me are the private property signs all over the trees in bright yellow. I just want to scream “Where am i???” I want clarity.
Well google maps can give me some clarity. But the reality is, I have to drive it out. There was no place to turn around. Just me, the dirt road, and the trees. All of my concerns are valid. But I can’t just not drive down that road because I’m anxious or afraid. We would never get home. So I slow down, in hopes of not popping a tire, take a deep breath, and drive. I won’t know what is on this road till I drive down it.
In life, a lot of unexpected circumstances come up. Some you can say no to out of fear. Some you ignore because you don’t want to see the truth. Some you don’t entertain because you don’t know what it will be like or the outcome. If you continue to live this way, everything gets heavier and heavier. Each new situation is scarier, harder to work through.
If you do decide to go down a new path, don’t let your mind feed you lies. The mind is so powerful. I wondered about that man, why he was so deep in the woods, was something sketchy happening. Reality is he is probably just taking a walk, but the mind can wander and also have you focus on anything but what you need to focus on right then and there. Fear can fill your spirit. Leaving doubt, hopelessness.
It’s time to let go of all of it. Ultimately you can’t control the outcome, you can take a road you think will take you home but you still don’t know what’s on that road. You could pop a tire, your car might break down, you may encounter some interesting people, maybe a tree fell in the road, but you work through it. You call someone for help. You learn new things. You meet new people. You end up stronger and wiser, because you survived some unfortunate situations, you now know how to work through them, and you know you’re persistent and fully capable of taking that road again.
And the next time your mind jumps to fear of going down another road, you remember all you have overcome and remind yourself you will overcome anything on the path. It won’t be easy, is anything ever easy? But you will be glad you took that road instead of the “normal” paved one. The one that felt so safe, and you knew exactly where it was going.
You become stronger everyday by taking these alternate routes, you learn the truth about yourself, and you also bring light to the lies and the shame. Keep moving onward my friends.