This is an analogy.
Not a fan-fic parody of Billy Madison and I, Robot (which now that I think about it, I would go see.)
We hit countless points throughout our lives where we self-reflect. We stop walking, look up from the road and turn around to see either how far we've come or wonder if we took the right path. I hit the point recently thanks to 1995 Comedy, Billy Madison. And ooo-we, it made me turn around, hard.
If you have never watched this movie, grab a chair. Billy Madison is a 27-year-old man-child who has breezed through life and never had a worry thanks to his hotel magnet father. But when his father starts to consider who will take over when his is gone, Billy doesn't exactly fill him with confidence. To prove that he is worthy of the mantel, he must repeat grade school all over again (two weeks per grade).
There are plenty of life lessons and morals you can take away from this film. My take away was that my life has (almost) been beat for beat like Billy's. With the omission that my family didn't own a chain of hotels. When we stayed in one, the five of us shared a room. But other similarities are apparent. Throughout grade school I coasted through. Not taking anything school related seriously and just counting down the minutes until I could leave. Critical assignments (essays and weeklong projects) I had my parents help me. Putting in a good 65% of effort into it (which they took personal offence when I came back with a low grade). With that labor out of my life, I could focus on day-dreaming and having fun. Even when I entered college, I picked a field that encouraged me to goof off, acting. It wasn't until the end when I realized that writing would allow me to live in my day-dreams and make them real. Focusing in on this career path that felt true to me, it became painfully obvious to me that there were hurdles moving forward that I had avoided in the past. I need a basic idea of the English writing structure. That included grammar, sentence structure, proper punctuation and in many instances, a wider vocabulary. I started going through basic grade school English to prove I can be taken seriously as a writer.
This realization came hand in hand with a truant of self-depredation as well. Feelings that I felt all throughout school. You're wasting your time, you're not good enough, you’re a failure, you're an idiot, you'll make a fool of yourself. Comparing myself with other writers and wondering if I could ever be their peer. My Billy Madison was not as fun as Sandler's. Sure, he had his doubts but he didn't go full introverted drama, he touched the water then jumped over it and got right back to the laughs. His never mentioned if he kept quiet in class, no one would look at him for stuttering when he read aloud (Stop looking at me Shwan!). Or afraid to answer a question wrong to be made an example of (a simple wrong would have been fine). Both would probably lead any parent doing whatever they can so their child wouldn't feel left behind. Leading me to stop looking at the road and look back and wonder, "do I bother to keep going when I should have taken this path years ago?"
This isn't in any way a bashing of the school system or tale of regret; this is a look back. I took a road just like Billy did but I am not doomed because of it. The big take away is that it doesn't matter how you got to this point in your life. If you know where you want to go, sometimes going back and covering new ground can help you get to your goal. And enjoy the road you take to get there.