Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

Some decisions are easy to make; some make themselves so you really can't even call them decisions. Others are hemmed in by time and circumstance, making the decision swift and while not necessarily painless, once made you move on. Then there are the really tough decisions, the kind where you are wracked with self-doubt, wondering if this is really the right thing to do. These decisions, these moments of torment, are enough to distress even the most healthy, let alone those of us facing additional burdens. But then again, we all carry burdens, many not so visible as mine, many unknown to those around, hidden within the folds of daily life.

For me, the easy decisions are the practical ones, the ones where necessity simply places a choice in front of me, leaving me to weigh the pros and cons, and then move in the direction most likely to produce the desired result. These are the business decisions, those with limited impact. I simply look at factors like cost, utility, duration of use, quality and such. Then, I decide.

The decisions that I find tough are the ones that impact my emotional space, the decisions that leave me in a place where I wonder, pondering the outcomes of the alternative, worrying about what might or might not happen. These decisions almost always have to do with my illness these days; in fact almost every decision in my life these days, from where to put the coffee in the kitchen to where I go shopping or where I get gas for my truck, is driven by the outcomes of ALS. Most of these daily decisions are the easy, practical ones. Put the coffee where you can reach it; go shopping where they have a power shopping cart; get gas at a full service gas station.

Then there are the really tough decisions, the lifestyle decisions, those affecting not only my life, but the lives of those around me, those who care for me. These are the really hard decisions, not because I have to make them but simply because they would not have to be made were it not for ALS. It's just harder to decide even though the outcome is inevitable. So many times I wish others could make these decisions for me, but I am the one with the disease, I am the one who has to live, and die, with the outcome. I have to decide.

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