Sliding Doors: Catching The Train of Life

sliding doors rubypjohnson.wordpress.comLast year I passed through the Atlanta Airport and had the misfortune of traveling on the train(tram) between terminals. The sliding doors of the train opened fast and closed faster leaving many passengers waiting outside. Then those riding the train kept riding back and forth when they couldn’t get off fast enough. It reminded me of an old movie “Sliding Doors” where a woman catches a train in one version and misses it in the other. One moment makes a difference. Her life plays out in a different way depending on which sliding door she enters.
It’s a fascinating premise and I think there is much to be said for it. Life does turn on these pivotal moments, and they may not seem pivotal at the time but actually end up defining the course of our lives.
I know my life would be quite different if I hadn’t lived in a particular place and met a wonderful man. I would never have had the adventures I did or have two wonderful children and grandchildren.
It’s interesting to imagine that there might be a totally different but equally good life I could be living right now, in another city in another country. Would it be equally wonderful? Perhaps? Perhaps not. Possibly it would be awful and I would be dreaming of a happier life? Then maybe it might be better? I could have won the lottery. I will never know. But it’s not important. My choice is made.
I am sure I am not alone in feeling life could have gone a very different way. Maybe I would have married a different man. Or maybe I could have chosen a career or choice of degree/training that went one way and not the other. But I didn’t. Moments and decisions can define our lives. I think the key to being happy is to not look back too often at the train we did not catch. To accept that it has left the station and we are not on it. Maybe we were never meant to be on that train! Maybe we were. But whatever, it has left. That’s a fact. We got on a different train. To be happy we need to embrace our current reality which choice has brought us and live with that focus right now. We can’t look back and lament the choice we did not make or the life we might have had. Life can be wonderful right now on the train we’re on. If we let go of the alternative, and embrace the here and now, we will know it has all unfolded the only way it could.
I have a wonderful life here, and that’s the train I am on. I feel lucky I got on that train every single day!

What train are488px-ATL_People_Mover_2 you on? Are you still thinking of the trains you didn’t catch? Is it making you happy?


5 thoughts on “Sliding Doors: Catching The Train of Life

  1. Well, that’s an interesting way of looking at life. But what if you’re on the train to hell, can’t you make a decision to get off at the next station? Or if life’s not what you want, can’t you change your here and now?


    • I think it’s all a matter of how you view life. For instance, I made a decision not to go to medical school because of what I wanted at that time. I know I would have been a good physician. Do I beat myself up over my choice? No. I’ve had life  filled with adventure and travel and I wanted that then not later in life. I went through that door and hopped on that train and it has taken me where I chose to go.


  2. But in all seriousness, this is something I’ve pondered for a long time. Are we really in charge of our own destiny? Is it really just a matter of choices or do all roads lead to the one we are on?


  3. Anne you sound like a follower of John Calvin who felt God was in control of all current and future actions. So if you made a decision to take one route over another then it was a preordained decision


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