I am at a life-changing juncture. I do not know which way I will go, but I have been thinking about the times, people and events that changed my life (for good or ill) in significant ways. For today's Friday Five, share with us five "fork-in-the-road" events, or persons, or choices. And how did life change after these forks in the road?
I'm reminded of the Yogi Berra quote
When you come to a fork in the road, take it.
Funny...and yet descriptive, too. 'Cause that's how I roll:
Age 9: I remember trying to decide which I liked more: visual art or music? I was trying to decide where to focus my energy. (No, I wasn't overprogrammed, just a thinker.) I really enjoyed both, and liked the fact that I always had something to show for my effort after art class. But I loved to sing, and had just started guitar lessons on my 3/4 size red-and-black acoustic guitar. I liked the way that I felt more alive somehow when I sang...and so my Inner Romantic conquered my Inner Pragmatist for the first of, oh, I don't even KNOW how many decisions. I made the right call, though--I'm a decent musician, but have no discernible talent in the visual arts. :-)
Age 19: Music Therapy major or Music Education major? After much agonizing I ended up trying both and then graduating with an extremely marketable B.A. in Music. (snicker) I had a starter job in music publishing, in which I've worked on and off for my whole career, and so I decided to GRADUATE and get on with my life!
Age 29: Continue in corporate training or go to seminary? I was off to a good start as a trainer, and more-or-less liked it. Was making good money, had a lot of contacts...and was ultimately dissatisfied that it was the way I should be spending my time and effort. And it seemed that a deeper voice was speaking in me. Seminary it was. Now: MDiv or MSM (sacred music)? It was music...but I haven't stopped considering MDiv as well. Maybe my denomination will make that a bit easier for me next summer.
Age 39: Continue in church music or go back to training? I'd had a shattering experience at my First Big Church Job and was seriously questioning my calling...not to mention having a pile of debt from going back to school. Exhausted and disheartened, I wasn't sure I was willing to put myself back together and try to continue church work. And then there was The Interview. I met with the hiring committee of my present church and something deep inside me sang...and that was the right answer, the healing answer, the real answer.
Age 9-29: I think I'm gay. Do I ignore it and hope it goes away, or do I find out more about what it might mean for me? From 9-18, I ignored it. From 18-19, I fell in love and got my heart broken. From 19-29 I fought it. At 29, I fell in love with Beloved and the world opened up.
And I knew what to do.