Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Decisions....We make them constantly. We make small decisions (what am I going to have for lunch?). Slightly bigger ones (should I wake up early to exercise?). A bit bigger.... (I'm saving for a vacation so I won't buy that). Sometimes really big (this person isn't good for me so I will cut them from my life)... And for some a really really huge one... (I'm going to amputate my daughter's foot).

When I think of decision making I think of what huge decisions Michael and I have made. Particularly pursuing IVF and then amputation for Madeleine. Otherwise I have to admit that I don't give a lot of thought to decision making. I eat relatively the same thing for lunch daily (salad with a protein). I do the same exercise (running and yoga videos). I hang out usually with the same people (you know who you are). I think of big decisions as these monumental events. In fact I can remember the days around big decision making and can count my blessings associated with these choices.

Before I became pregnant I thoughtlessly took for granted that it was a parent's job to make decisions. I remember parents of preschoolers saying, "but they don't want to wear a coat" and I was like, "tough, it's cold! who's the parent anyway!?"

As with most things, my opinions changed when I became a parent. All of a sudden I took in other perspectives: from Michael and my kids and the environment. But I held the belief that Parents make the best decisions for their kids, as much as they can, anyway. If you avoid making those choices you are doing your child a serious injustice. After all, their small brains are not developed. They don't understand that eating shit off the ground can make them sick. So we make the choice and we teach them.

You can see where this is going. When it was time to choose to amputate Mad's foot I was like, "what!? How can I make that choice for her!?" but truthfully, how can I not? I'm her mom. I decide what to feed her. How to dress her. What school she attends. Who she spends time with and how she spends her time. It is my job, as her mother, to make the very best decisions in her interest. That I have done.

This week I am in AWE, literally, of fellow parents around me making difficult decisions for their child. Many of these situations have happened at work. (I do work with kids constantly, you know.)  I see parents struggle with medication (to medicate or not....), tutoring vs. summer vacation, keeping at previous school or moving, special education..... and other very challenging choices.

Here's what I know, friends.

Parents love their kids. They make choices everyday (what to put in their lunch box) and we have to trust that they are making the best, most informed choice they can. I applaud them for that.

Thankfully I do not regret making the choice to amputate Madeleine's foot and fit her with a prosthesis.

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