About ten years ago I read a short article online somewhere (probably just a couple of paragraphs) about a man and his father. Something the father told him when he was young shaped his decisions about who he wanted to be. It made an impression on me, and I've since tried searching for it on the internet, but with no luck. Any help to identify the short article would be appreciated!!

At the end of a walk through the snow, a father looked back with his son, and showed him the footsteps each of them had made in the snow. The father's steps were direct and purposeful, and lead directly to where they were now. On the other hand, the son's steps wandered to and fro, exploring this, walking along a fence for a while, looking at that, and were not at all direct.

The father tried to use this as a lesson to teach his son to always be purposeful, direct, and decisive in life. At that moment, the son decided that that was exactly how he was not going to lead his life, but would allow himself to be thrilled by any interesting distractions that came along in life, in spite of perhaps having made other plans.

  • I don't suppose you could be thinking about St Josemaria, who was inspired by some footprints in snow to seek a different destiny in life?
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 19 '17 at 17:37
  • @Randal'Thor raises a good point; was this fiction or nonfiction?
    – Shokhet
    Jun 19 '17 at 19:36
  • Thank you for the comments so far. I took it to be non-fiction, but memory may not serve me well. @Randal'Thor, sorry no it wasn't St Josemaria. Jun 19 '17 at 19:57
  • In searching for your story, I came across this haunting tale. Not going to search again for a while.
    – Rand al'Thor
    Jun 20 '17 at 12:48
  • @Randal'Thor - what a heart-wrenching story!!! Thank you. I still feel sad now. Don't blame you for not wanting to run into more like that :( Jun 24 '17 at 6:57

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