A Blog A Day

It\’s a blog where I write about the extraordinary and the ordinary things going on in my life.

The Road Not Taken

I enjoyed the mini-reunion that I had with my batch mates in college. We only knew each other by faces but we never really spoke to each other until then. Our common friend, T, invited us to her wedding. On the wedding reception we talked about our careers and about our lives.

There were only three of us. There was A, J and of course me. We talked about how most of our batch mates are already working and living outside of the country. There was no hint of envy because we know how hard it is to live overseas away from family and friends. And also because we have come to love our jobs and our lives here.

I would have expected A to be the first one to land a job outside of the country. He was always on the Dean’s list. He was popular in college because he was one of the most intelligent and most diligent students. His life turned out differently than what was expected of him. Everyone thought that he was going to proceed to med school and become a doctor. But he took the road less traveled. He took another college course related to computers. And he’s now sort of a computer geek working for a programming or gaming company. He seems to be enjoying his job. And he has no hang ups about what he did after college.

J is the same. After college, she worked as a therapist in a spa. Her job took her overseas. She worked in a cruise ship for a year and a half which took her to places such as the Caribbean and Europe. After that, she went back to work in her hometown. She seemed happy about her current job. Although she has plans of working overseas, she doesn’t seem to be in too much of a hurry.

As for me, my life did really take an unexpected turn. I was supposed to leave the country. I had already completed my documents and passed the exam. I only had a few months of waiting time. So, while waiting, I took a job in the customer service industry. I never expected that my immigration application would be stopped. After three years of waiting, I’m still working for the same industry. I’ve been promoted twice within just the past 2 years. But the most miraculous thing that happened was becoming a Buddhist.

I’m starting to believe that everything really has a reason. If my immigration papers went through as it should, I would not have become a Buddhist. Was it my destiny to become a Buddhist? I think so. Because the possibility of me being introduced to Buddhism was so unlikely. I never would have imagined in a million years that I would convert. I was okay with being a Catholic. By okay, I meant, I was okay with being unhappy and being depressed. But I guess, life really has other plans for me.

Once I became a Buddhist, my life really opened up for me. I became more friendly and a little less reserved. I became wiser. And I’m really happy. Being happy was something that was never a possibility for me before. Now I can say with confidence that I’m happy. I’m happy even when I’m physically exhausted. I’m happy even when I’m crying. And most of the tears that I shed right now are tears of joy and gratitude instead of tears of sorrow.

My mother and sister would always tell me what I should do and what I should accomplish in life. They have requirements and conditions that need to be met before happiness can be achieved. They always say, ” Finish school and then you’ll be happy.” My mother would always say, ” Marry someone rich and you’ll be happy.” She always has something to say, but I doubt that she’s happy. Every morning she keeps on complaining about her husband, her children and her life.

My sister went to med school and then after that went to law school because she thought it was the safest choice to make. She’s now a lawyer. She takes her work with her everywhere she goes. Her words are always peppered with ” I’m a lawyer, I should know these things.” She thinks that being a lawyer is who she is. It’s what she does, but it doesn’t define who she is. People are so enamored with titles and accomplishments. But does it lead one to true happiness? It doesn’t.

My life opened up before me because I took the road less traveled. I started out with a life map. I had big plans for myself. I guess those plans that I have, were just not going to make me happy. Now, I don’t have conditions that I need to meet in order to become happy. I know that how much I earn has nothing to do with me being happy. I know that my title or designation has nothing to do with me being happy. I’m happy, just the way I am.

The Road Less Traveled
By Robert Frost

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; 5
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, 10
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. 15
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. 20

1 Comment»

  tototch wrote @

When you look at your past and say you had no regrets about your decisions… when you are grateful for everything that happened be it bad or good… when you know that whatever struggles come your way in the future you can face it… that is the greatest accomplishment. miss you gen! you take care!

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