I’m an avid reader of poetry, grateful for the keen and eloquent insight of those among us gifted with “eyes to see” what isn’t quite so obvious to many of us. My daughter left the other day to begin graduate school. As I reflected on this path she has chosen, the poem “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost (below) came to mind. The last few lines are fairly well known, but standing alone they feel out of context.
As humans, we each have a story about the roads we have chosen to take. However, it is different when we watch our children make their choices – we want so much for them to avoid the loose rocks, the hidden snares. Yet, as I look back on my own journey, I recognize that the rough places were often where I learned the most and became the most myself.
I hope Frost’s words might bring clarity, allowing you to release and bless your daughter/son to walk the roads of their own choosing.
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 lead 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.