When I looked behind, the path I had just travelled was familiar and pleasing to my eye. As I inspected it I noticed some bumps that I recalled tripping over, and there was some rough terrain, but it was beautiful and I was proud of it. The landscape was very much a part of me and I was satisfied to have made it this far. As I turned to face forward I noticed the path that I had come from continued, and that the fork was created by another trail joining a bend in the original road. From what I could see, the original road that continued ahead looked fairly similar to the one behind me. It had some bumps, some rough terrain, but from where I stood, it appeared much smoother than the road I had just travelled. It was lined with the same ground shrub, and it looked fairly safe.
I walked down the road – just a little – to see if I could glimpse more of what lay ahead beyond the bend. I didn’t wander too far, only a few steps, because I didn’t want to lose sight of the beginning of the other path. I asked myself, ‘What am I looking for?’ I became aware that I felt disappointed at the structure of this new but familiar road. It was a planned path, almost paved, with all the rockiest terrain smoothed out. There seemed to be no sense of excitement. So perhaps I was looking for a wild adventure, some new challenges. But, I thought, if I were to see some challenges ahead, wouldn’t I be inclined to try to avoid them?
I stepped back to the fork and took a long, lingering look down the other path. What did I see? I saw terrain I had never seen before. It was wild, untamed and jungle-like. It suggested new places, maybe even new faces. Strangers. Looking down that path made my heart beat faster, my mind racing with anticipation of what might be around the corner. I walked ahead, just a little. The ground below my feet was not paved – it was quite rocky and uneven. I became aware of every step. I asked myself, ‘What am I looking for on this path?’ I wondered if it was all a beautiful façade. I wanted to see if the entrance had all the fun and thrills to entice me, but whether once I got in and lost sight of the old road, there would be a dull, barren wasteland. But I couldn’t walk far enough along to see around the bend without losing sight of the old, familiar road. At that moment I wouldn’t allow myself to walk further.
Some ideas came to mind – what if I continued ahead on the jungle path but left the trail of a rope behind me, tied to a tree at the fork in the road so that I could find my way back? Or, what if I continued walking ahead on the old road but made little tracks through to the jungle path along the way?
I asked myself, ‘Why can’t I travel both paths?’
From deep down the answer flooded my thoughts, for I knew the paths would eventually veer in two completely different directions and, at some point, I would lose one of them.
I walked back to the fork in the road and took a deep breath as I looked at both roads ahead. I decided that this state of indecision was necessary, and I sensed that I was to choose wisely. I decided to linger at the beginning of the jungle path to get to know it better. I would watch closely and carefully. I would take note of anything that presented itself in helping me to decide which path was to define my future. I would be wide-eyed and open to all possibilities.
Taken from my heart wanders by Pia Jane Bijkerk
Back in November 2011, Kelly and I reached a fork in the road and decided to take the jungle path. At first, it was quite hard. The terrain was so unfamiliar and almost prickly. We quickly learned that there was a lot of immediate obstacles ahead of us on the jungle path – new faces that would make us insecure, pressures that would test our friendship and commitments that we would find hard to juggle – but we could not ignore that there was something about this path, despite it’s appearance, that felt right. An instinct that was so powerful that we couldn’t ignore it. We decided to push on, and with every new obstacle we came across we also encountered new strength, beauty, passion, and growth. The path started to bloom into something that made every step exciting and made us feel excited about where we were heading.
Life is about taking risks, branching out into the unknown and the reason I wanted to share this story with you is because you too might be at the fork in the road. You might be, right now, toying with the idea of taking the jungle path but are experiencing the same fear we did. Maybe it’s to do with a decision regarding your wedding, or maybe you’re thinking of starting your own business. Regardless of what it is, if something deep within you feels like it’s right then take the jungle path………because……..it could lead to something life changing.
We’re still walking the jungle path – to be honest, I only feel like we’re a mile in but my god what a mile it’s been!
Happy Thursday Lovely People
Festival Brides xx