The road not taken can bring to mind so many things. May I just start by saying that looking back and wondering is probably not the healthiest thing for me to do, but certainly is a human thing to do. We all like to wonder sometimes if we had made a different decision at some point, who or where would we be now?
I am no different, but I don't do it often and I seldom come up with a better life in my wandering mind than the one I am actually living.
I am sure I could have stayed with my children's father and raised them in an intact home instead of divorcing him and struggling for 5 years to pay my bills and take care of their needs. I could have not married husband #2 because I didn't really love him like one loves someone you are about to marry. I loved him as a person and a friend and he needed someone to help him raise his son who was in a precarious situation. I loved his son and wanted to help him have a family, real loving family. I did that. I'm glad I did that. I divorced #2 and I ultimately lost that son to his mother. She had gotten her life together by then and I couldn't keep him.
Then I married #3 and current hubby and I think this is the one. I mean it's only been 29 years 7 months, but I think it's gonna work out.
So, the roads not taken in this respect might have lead to the kids having their dad in their life and I would have had to become a different kind of woman to live with the situation he created for me, but we could have stayed together. I see us now 44 years later and I see two people who don't really like each other anymore, but have managed to build a life together anyway. Neither of them particularly happy and they spend very little time together. They have nothing in common and they don't care. They just live in the same house. Glad I'm not on that road. He is most likely glad, too.
Had I stayed with #2, I would have maybe gotten to keep my step-son another couple of years, but eventually he would have gone back to his mom because she did clean herself up and the courts would have allowed her to have her son again regardless. #2 was a truck driver, over the road, and gone all the time. Home like 3 days a month. He was very much a visitor in my home. We were never really a couple, though we really did love each other, not in the married for life kind of way. Long term with him would have resulted in me being alone a good deal of the time as the kids got older and I would have spent a lot of time with my friends. I don't think that would have felt like marriage to me. For many people it works fine, but I need more partnership in my life. Glad I didn't take that road.
I was once offered a job in Illinois and I seriously considered taking it. It would have been a big raise and a wonderful opportunity. I declined because I was single and had 2 kids that I thought needed to have family around. I felt after a divorce, the more I could keep routine, the better. The timing was all wrong. My kids needed their grandparents, aunts, uncles and their dad. It was the right decision. Had I gone to Illinois, I would never have met #3 and that's a road I am very glad I took.
Maybe looking back is a good exercise for me after all. It might have made me appreciate where I am, who I am and with whom I am sharing my life.