“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”
Before me are two paths and how I hate a duality! As I am one being, in one body with one mind, dualities inevitably lead to dilemmas. Physically, I can only move in one direction at a time, forever leaving the other option to rot in the land of “What Might Have Been.” And that question. That haunting, tearing, immobilizing question.
What do I choose? Option A or Option B? Door Number 1 or Door Number 2? The Road On The Left or The Road On The Right? North or South?
The vexing truth of duality is this: though there may be two, you can choose only one. And what you do not choose becomes a fertile ground to cultivate regret.
“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”
If you are listening, oh how I long for unity! For one. For the clouds to part and one radiant path to present itself before me. No choices because I inexorably choose the wrong one. No forks in destiny’s road. Just a clear ribbon of endless light with a sign post saying “This way and only this way.!” No tricks. No possibility of doubt. No regret.
But we know this doesn’t happen. Every road seems to dead end in a fork. Leaving us to choose. That devastating blessing: choice.
And so I make my choice. I choose web development.
I choose computers and bits and bytes and programs that don’t work half the time, and websites that amaze all the time. I choose quiet but for the tap tap tapping of keys in the semi darkness because I have been working all day at my terminal and the sun is gone now. Or it is early morning and the sun cannot yet be convinced to rise.
“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.
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.”
~ Robert Frost
I don’t know why life makes us choose with no guarantee that we have chosen the right.
The only thing I know is the unity I long for will never materialize. We live in the age of endless options, and you simply cannot choose them all.
It is my fervent hope that “somewhere ages and ages hence” I will not be telling this tale with a sigh. With women drastically underrepresented in tech, I am definitely taking the road less traveled. Will it “make all the difference?” I am certain that it will. The only question is will it be a difference I can live with?