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Forks in the Road

Another turning point a fork stuck in the road

Time grabs you by the wrist directs you where to go

So make the best of this test and don’t ask why

It’s not a question but a lesson learned in time

It’s something unpredictable but in the end its right

I hope you had the time of your life.

This is the first verse of the song Good Riddance by Green Day; One of my favorite songs. Are you doing what you thought you would be doing at this stage in your life? How often have you second guessed decisions you have made in your life? Every decision we make in life has repercussions attached to them. Sometimes they work out great but sometimes they don’t. Regardless of the outcome, our life is riddled with forks in the road where we either turn left or right and have to live with the outcome which will eventually lead to the next fork in the road. One of the biggest things I have had to learn to do in accepting this illness is not living in the past by not questioning the “what if’s” and the “why me”. Where I am sitting today, the “why me” is much more difficult and hopefully that answer will be resolved in heaven. The “what if’s” are much more common for all of us.

Remember those times your heart was broken by “the one”? That probably happened in high school for most of us. I just had my 30th high school reunion and although I could not attend, I am sure I would have talked to “the one” that evening. How about the job or promotion that you wanted or thought you deserved that you didn’t get? You were probably devastated at the time but I bet another door opened. Sometimes when we hit that fork in the road we choose the direction and other times that decision is made for us. Acceptance of that decision’s outcome is the moment we have to stay within. Someone once said, if you live in the past you die in the past, and there is a lot of truth to that. Our past creates our present, and our present creates our future, and I believe our attitude every day has the largest impact on how our present will turn out. No matter what you are facing, attitude is a choice. What is your attitude?

Obviously my biggest fork in the road was when a minor muscle cramp turned into ALS. Some may say that was a dead end, but I still had a life to live. My choices were to crash and burn, or change my attitude and enjoy every day of life I have with all its ups and downs.

Whether we like it or not we are exactly where we are today for a reason. If we don’t like our present situation, we all have the ability to determine our future and make it better. I am very blessed and I have many more blessings and wonderful memories today that resulted from decisions throughout my life that I at one time wished had gone another way. Listen to this song by Darius Rucker called “This” which has a great message, then accept and enjoy your life!

4 responses to “Forks in the Road

  1. John and Karen Boler ⋅

    You are amazing!
    You have been blessed with the power to change peoples lives with your messages!

    Thank you,

  2. Cheryl Lange ⋅

    Wow Jim … you’ve done it again! I’ve been a bit down these past few days – too many forks in the road for us lately. But thanks to your blog this week, I’m choosing to change my attitude. Thank you (again)! We are blessed with your words.

  3. Meg Engdahl ⋅

    Hi Jim! Thanks to Shelly Zirpoli I have found your blog. I just spent the better side of an hour catching up. And choking up. I have known of your diagnosis, but haven’t seen you since you talked to Erik. First and foremost know that you are our friend. And we are here for you and Susan and the kids- call anytime. Erik is always just a call away.
    Second- thank you for being brave enough to share your thoughts. You are an eloquent writer and your words will endure as a source of strength and inspiration for all of us. You are right, this is a blessing and a gift to be able to truly see the value of life and love. You see that now. My wish for the rest of mankind would be to see what you see without the diseases that refocus our vision of life.
    My prayers will continune to be for your health. Thank you for being you.
    Much love,
    Meg Engdahl

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