Struggling With the “What ifs” of Decision Making

Photo by Brett Jordan on Unsplash

I was having a conversation today with a friend who is also a mother of a very bright two-year-old girl. It warms my heart to see how well our girls play together, but also how loving she is with her daughter. Lots of snacks. Lots of hugs. Lots of time in nature. All the things I value as well.

Motherhood and memories. It is what my business is founded on.

To be clear, I absolutely have a life outside of my children. For example, I am in graduate school. The experience has been stressful at times, but I see how it has affected them positively more than anything.

Being selfish is a good thing. I believe in giving them roots and wings. I want them to soar when the time comes.

A couple of months back I started to travel. I usually don’t do that. But I felt that I would have to, and I did. Sometimes zoom just not enough. Also, it’s great to get out. The opportunity to wake up slowly with no distractions and full authority over the television is priceless. Plus, meeting new people is great.

Still, I couldn’t help but wonder, was this a good decision?

That first trip out I hit the ground running. They could barely get out, “bye mommy, we lo-” before I tossed my bag in the Uber and sped off. The next couple of times I was a little more anxious.

I was a stay-at-home mom for 8 years. In the beginning it was not a choice to but more of a necessity. During that time, I discovered what it was like to be relegated to near obscurity and irrelevance. I was so out the game it took me a moment to reenter the general population. I had to get my sea legs back. Without the obsessive checking of my smartphone at my child’s doctor’s appointments to project an air of business and importance — — I was often given the side eye as if my days were free and languid. I wish that were the case. For a person who believed in spa days on the regular motherhood felt like labor. My hair was a mess, my shirts were stained, and my car was destroyed with crackers, juice, and other sticky stuff.

I had to do it. My son needed me. Most people were clueless to the amount of work it took to get a child with developmental delays, and rough start at birth; speaking and matriculated into a regular classroom. Applause to him, he is doing well and beginning to operate in his gifts.

However, I asked myself daily is this the right decision?

Although I ended up being right 99 percent of the time, I wasn’t always confident to go against the grain. It’s easy to follow your gut when it is only you, but what about another person? What about as a family?

What if you are wrong?

Photo by Justin Luebke on Unsplash

When my middle daughter had to have surgery to put in her ports in order to receive her chemotherapy, I had to make a split decision on adding a gtube as well. The gtube would allow her to receive food through her stomach when the chemotherapy made her too weak to eat. As she lay limp in my arms that afternoon in the busy prep room, I didn’t know what to do.

What if placing the gtube was too much for her body? She was already having three surgeries. What if I don’t place it and we really need it?

What if…what if…what if…

Uncertainty is a real thing. Sometimes the choice you make is simply the choice you make. We all make choices based on the information we have at the moment.

I stopped the surgeon on his way to get the room ready. “What do you think I should do?” I asked. My words pouring out and tumbling over each other delivering a litany of worry.

He shrugged. “You decide. You’re the mother.”

In that moment I made my decision. Unfortunately, it was not the best decision. But we went on to fight many more days. Making a split decision regarding the well-being of my child in that moment, began the slow uphill battle of trusting my inner voice.

Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash

Right now, you may have a decision to make. Most likely it is not a popular decision. However, you have to make it, or it will be made for you. Those situations are what Oprah Winfrey calls, “the brick.”

One of my mission’s in life is to help people avoid these bricks. I have been so stubborn at times that bricks made me feel invincible after I bounced back from adversity.

Yet being met with the devastation of my daughter’s stage four brain tumor had me on shaky ground for sure. It has taken me rising up from scorched Earth to fully get it.

You know the moments when all roads, doors, exits, and plan B strategies no longer exist?

You are dead smack in the moment. What will you do? Hopefully, you will look up.

Standing up for strong people, like me, is easy. Standing up and dragging people along is a challenge. So, I will tell you like the elders told me. “You can do it.”

What I know for sure is, things are simpler than they are made out to be and you have more power than you realize. I hope you stand on that knowledge.

When you go out into the world tomorrow and are faced with a bunch of conflicting information and decisions. Know that your destiny is tailor made for you. All roads lead to your good.

Take a moment to listen. Make the right decision for you.

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