Subject line: guardrails. May 31, 2015 by Hannah Brencher manchester, connecticut I have this belief that no matter the path of life you are currently on whether it be good, bad, moving forward, stuck in reverse or simply just on your way to your fridge at 2AM alone, someone or something guides you along. I used to call it guardrails to your life... that someone or something that keeps you on the track you are currently on. I was lucky. My guardrails were found within a very true friendship. I knew that I had someone to share every step forward with on my path no matter the direction I chose. I knew I had someone who would keep me away from the paths unwanted. She believed in my journey and I pushed her to believe in her own. We traveled together. For a while I traveled confidently in the direction I was going. I was moving towards great opportunities, adventures and new people. But somehow I must have walked too fast without looking to my side to realize the guardrails were no longer there... she wasn’t there. I was alone, it was my fault and my path became entirely unraveled. I felt like I was spinning completely out of control. I had lost my sense of direction, purpose and belief in myself. I became so overwhelmed with the loss of comfort and security that friendship had provided me with for so long that I forgot how to walk straight. Everything was wrong. Everything was unprotected. There were no guardrails guiding me and I had no choice but to keep moving forward blindly. For some time after, I threw it in reverse. Turned it all around and tried to replay every last step looking for where I turned left when I should have turned right. I thought I could fix the crookedness. I refused to let anyone else act as guardrails and I wanted nothing to do with the responsibility of being the same for someone else. Despite any attempt, I have not been able to mend this. However, like I began by saying... I was lucky.I know now to always look to my side and thank you for being there. I know now that it’s okay to look back sometimes because you may not know who could use a little pull forward. I know now guardrails in your life will not limit or constrict you but rather provide support in any direction you turn. I know now that the path will not always be straight but if you have people, or even just one person to walk beside you then everything will be okay. I know this all now, better late than never I suppose, and I have someone very important to me to thank when our now distant paths cross again.