Education has played an important role in my life and has shaped who I am today. As a young mother, wife and teacher, I wanted to make my mark in the world and be that difference maker. I knew my journey would be challenging and the choices I made would impact the future of my family as well as my path.
In 1991, I was working full time and also attending graduate classes to become a school counselor. I assumed that by advancing in my career, I would be on the path to leadership…counselor, principal and perhaps just maybe a school superintendent. I focused on networking with leaders around the South Texas area. I read the latest research on increasing student success. I became an expert in school law, special programs, parent engagement programs, grant writing, etc. Many times, I told myself that I was doing it all for my family. I worked so hard that I lost something really important in my life. I lost time with the greatest individuals in this world…my daughters.
I missed so many precious moments with my daughters that I began to question my journey. Was working hard to be a successful career woman more important than time with my family? The answer was NO. My family and career were always a balancing act for me. It was hard to create this happy medium for both. I always thought that I could successfully do both. But in reflecting on all the those decisions I made on my journey and I realized that I always had two roads.
“The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost comes to mind as I reflect on my journey. Everyone will be presented with two roads and everyone will choose.
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
This poem is a classic in American literature and American culture. Interpretation of poetry is interpretation by the reader…all unique, but just as true for each individual. After moving along through this short journey called life, my interpretation of Robert Frost’s poem changed over the years.
I am not here to review literature but to share my understanding of the choices we are continually are presented with. We will be presented with two roads in life and “ages and ages hence” we will see how they have always been interchangeable.