Rather, the title of this post should be “making life-changing decisions in the midst of the storm”, but Andrea prefers short titles over long ones, so there we have it.
We may occasionally find ourselves in the middle of a crisis or in turmoil, and we have to make a decision that will likely alter the course of our life. The decision needs to be made and it needs to be made now, for whatever reasons, and there is no other option.
But I’ve found in many cases, the decision can wait, and it’s often best to sit on things for a time to really consider all possibilities. Being someone who hates uncertainty, I have a near primal need to make a decision to just get over with it. Thankfully, I’ve learned from a few mistakes, and now force myself to step away from my laptop and put down my phone in order to wait for the crisis to pass, and to gain a bit of perspective.
Other times, if waiting for the immediate storm to pass isn’t an option, we can gain perspective from others who have faced what we are currently facing, and who have come out the other side.
And that’s what Veronique Bergeron, a fellow PWPL blogger, offers in this post at her family/motherhood blog.
In her most recent blog, she writes about how many of us make decisions about our family size when we’re in the trenches of parenting young ones. We’re exhausted from sleepless nights, diaper changes, and wondering if we’ll ever eat a hot meal again. Here’s what she has to say about that:
These two conversations had a profound impact on me. On my perspective on having children and making family-centered decisions. It taught me that (1) none of us gets another kick at the can once our fertile years are behind us and once our kids are grown; and (2) that raising young children is the grunt work of parenting, the tiling of the field from which the harvest will later come forth. It’s a use-it-or-lose-it proposition: we don’t get to pour the time, care and affection we didn’t pour into our children once they are grown and we don’t get to have more children once we are older and lonelier. The blessings of children are not the sleepless nights, the bum-wipings and the ear-piercing shrieks. No. Those are the latrines of parenting. The blessings come later, once the field has been tended and nurtured, early in the morning, late at night, in the cold, in the rain, back-broken and exhausted, when you felt like it and when you did not. […]
That said, assuming I live as long or longer than my grandparents, who died between the ages of 80 and 100, I have another 42 years — probably more like 50 — of life without small-kid-insanity on the horizon. Fifty year. I haven’t even been alive that long! That’s what I mean by “another lifetime”: 40-50 years of friendship and support and family meals and visits and help and whatever other amazing things will come out of having a large gang of properly attached people around me.
That’s it! And I love it. Veronique sees beyond the storm, and is choosing to make her decisions that way.
Let’s not forget that storms eventually pass, and there are brighter days on the other side of them. Especially when we make decisions that have permanent, life-changing ramifications.
(Veronique and her beautiful family.)