Beyond The Flood

Erika Petrelli
Erika Petrelli

Recently I was traveling down to the southern part of Indiana to conduct a professional development training. I plugged the directions into my phone, printed out a hard copy of directions “just in case” (yes, I’m still very old fashioned that way), and enjoyed the drive. I’ve been doing several trainings across the state throughout the fall and winter, and have truly fallen in love with Indiana over and over again in the process…. The farm country, the beautiful old barns, the back roads, the small towns, the wide open spaces. I feel so blessed not only to live in this beautiful state, but to actually have the opportunity to truly soak it in and appreciate it.

On this day, on this drive, something interesting happened.

I was getting close to my destination, and the nice lady on my phone that gives me my directions told me to go down a particular road. Following her lead, I took the road around a few bends…. And was met with a “road closed” sign, the road completely flooded over with water.

I backed up, found a different road, and asked her to re-route me. She did…. straight back to the flooded closed road. I consulted my old fashioned printed directions and they offered no alternative suggestions.

So I backed up, found a different different road, and asked her to re-route me. She did… straight back to the flooded closed road.

So I meandered through some gorgeous back roads and sleepy neighborhoods to see if I could find my own re-route. And I did… straight back to the flooded closed road.

Knowing that there surely must be more than one road to my destination, I backtracked to the main road, went in a different direction for a mile or so, and THEN asked her to re-route me. Which she did… to another very beautiful narrow country road that, after about a half mile, ended in a flood. Without even a “road closed” sign—this one just faded off into the water.

Determined at this point to get past the flood, I got back on the highway and went farther south several miles to the next exit, and successfully (and easily) found the place I’d been searching for.

Coming at it from the south, it turned out, provided a wide open opportunity that had actually been there for me all along.

The path isn’t always clear. Or easy. Is it? Sometimes it’s hard to figure out which way to go. And sometimes you try to do things differently but end up at the same (seeming) dead end.

And one dead end might appear to lead to another.

But ultimately the road opens up. New paths emerge.

The road opens up. You just have to see beyond the flood.

How can you see beyond the flood today, toward a new path?

Erika Petrelli

By Erika Petrelli

Erika Petrelli is the Senior Vice President of Leadership Development (and self-declared Minister of Mischief) for The Leadership Program, a New York City-based organization. With a Masters degree in Secondary Education, Erika has been in the field of teaching and training for decades, and has been with The Leadership Program since 1999. There she has the opportunity to nurture the individual leadership spirit in both students and adults across the country, through training, coaching, keynotes, and writing. The legacy Erika strives daily to create is to be the runway upon which others take flight. If you enjoy these blogs, you should check out her interactive journal, On Wings & Whimsy: Finding the Extraordinary Within the Ordinary, now available for sale on Amazon. While her work takes her all around the country, Erika calls Indiana home.