When A Path Diverges

A year ago the path I was walking diverged. As I looked ahead, I saw the same pea gravel trail with some slight elevation gains, it continued on as far as my eyes could see. To the right there was another path; it snaked up the mountainside. There were small blooms alongside the rocky path, as my eyes tried to get a sense as to where the path lead, a storm cloud appeared at the summit.

I realized if I kept going straight, things would be fine. I probably wouldn't be sore tomorrow, it didn't even appear as if I would get rained on. It was just a matter of carrying on. Is that really what I wanted from my experience, just to carry on? For some reason I abruptly turned, I took the path up the mountain, the path that seemed unpredictable. I knew I would be sore tomorrow, but I would also feel the gains from the challenge. I did have my hiking boots on, I was ready for this. A mile up, I questioned what I was doing, did I really have the strength to take this path? I rested on a rock, pausing for some water and to catch my breath. As my heart raced beneath my pullover, my eyes caught a glimpse of the view, hundreds of feet above the trail I left behind. I was above large stretches of green pine trees and small rock outcroppings jetting from the green, but to the east were swaths of yellow hues, the landscape became a painting before my eyes. I tucked my water bottle back into the side pocket of my backpack and carried on towards the summit.

I'm still looking forward to reaching the top, my shin is a bit scraped up, my feet are throbbing, and my water bottle needs a refill. On the upside there is a change to my spirit, I feel a new confidence in my ability to face challenges. Onward, I tell myself, onward.