Friday, January 9, 2015

Saluting Your Sister Ship

I'll never know, and neither will you of the life you don't choose.  We'll only know that whatever that sister life was, it was important and beautiful and not ours.  It was the ghost ship that didn't carry us.  There's nothing to do but salute it from the shore.

~Cheryl Strayed, via tiny beautiful things: Advice on love and life from Dear Sugar

This was written in the context of an advice column to a man trying to decide if he should become a father.  It might be one of the most beautiful, profound things I have read in awhile.  We all have ghost ships.  Some of my own have included having more children, having a more robust career, my constant obsession with moving back to my hometown.  Instead of living in regret of the choices we don't make, it is such a powerful visual to salute those sailing ships from the shore.  Wish them well.  Know they were virtuous, formidable alternatives, but they no longer belong to us.  And treat them as such.

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