I first read Dr. M Scott Peck's book, the Road Less Traveled, nearly a quarter-century ago. It begins with the words, "life is difficult". When I wrote this post this morning, somehow, as I was publishing the story, it's contents disappeared. I am doing what I always do, starting over...taking a Mulligan. This journey that I am on is something I only want to do just once. I have no desire to go back to my youthful days, preferring to keep my eyes focused on the destination.
I watched "Extraordinary Measures" with my youngest son last night and it reminded me of all the challenges my business partners and I have gone through in our battles to survive against all odds. I met the man who was once my boss while at the ballpark celebrating "July with Jim". My first instinct was to ignore him and walk the other way. Something inside me nudged me to shake hands with him. I offered him a non-verbal "Shabbat Shalom" and then introduced him to Jim and his son. The amazing part of this story is that this man was slated to be the next CEO of one of the most powerful companies in America. We helped him earn top honors year after year and our city was considered the flagship in an organization with 2,000 sales people.
When this man devised a plan to replace all of us with a cheaper sales staff, he made sure that all doors were closed to other company-owned divisions in order to prevent us from competing with him. When we uncovered his plan, we decided that our only option was to start our own company and compete, even though the odds of success were slim.
My partners all agreed to never speak to this man again when we quit our jobs to go out on our own. The pain we suffered and the sacrifices we made were too high to let go of the past and we kept our promise to cut off all ties. On this cool day at the ballpark, I sensed an inner peace inside my own heart as I approached this man that was once my most despised enemy. Forgiveness is so good for the soul.
If you find yourself on the road less traveled, remember this...you are not alone. Don't ever give up. Watch the movie "Extraordinary Measures", about the power of the human spirit, with Brendan Fraser, Keri Russell and Harrison Ford. You can find a way to win, no matter what the odds are and you can find a way to forgive your most hated enemy, the power is within you.