Hindsight Parenting: Hard Decisions
I Am Struggling Dear Readers
I am struggling dear readers. I am struggling. I have decisions to make. Hard ones. Life changing ones. The decisions I need to make are similar decisions to ones I had to make when my sons were little. And that damn Hindsight is dogging me. Being older and so-called wiser, having a friend named Hindsight, can just add pain to things that are already feeling excruciating. Sometimes, Hindsight is annoying, heart wrenching, maddening, especially when the decision is hard enough without his two cents butting in. Lately, I just want to shut him up.
I want to make my decisions without the wisdom that Hindsight brings. I want to be dumb, ignorant, and selfish and do the things that I want without any other voice entering the conversation. Heck, even IF I was without Hindsight, I am not even sure of which way to go with the decisions that I have to make. But WITH Hindsight chiming in day and night, night and day, I am just absolutely positively drowning in a thick miserable muck of indecision.
But Hindsight has taught me what happens when one makes a decision selfishly, without thought given to the other players in the drama. Hindsight has taught me that flinging myself into a situation because I so desperately want something different without a plan or without foresight always ends up in disaster. That pesky Hindsight keeps telling me over and over and over that I just might have to wallow in that quagmire of irresolution for a tiny bit, or maybe even a longer bit until things are clearer, until plans have been made, until the path is apparent.
I won’t lie to you readers when I say that the knowledge in the paragraph above, the possession of that knowledge makes me angry because, darn it, I don’t want to wait it out. I can’t stand that the path is brambly and I am not sure of which way to turn, because if I didn’t have the knowledge above, it wouldn’t matter. I could jump in with both feet, without thought. Prickers be damned! But Hindsight has made me cautious almost fearful, knowing that movement without thought, changes without insight, fulfilling ones needs carelessly will be a certain catastrophe.
Ok, ok, ok, ok. So I will HAVE to succumb to THAT wisdom that Hindsight offers me. My decisions need time, consideration and a crystal clear weighing of consequences that come with all choices. Hindsight- 1. Logan-zip, zilch, nada, goose egg.
And so I begin the process. What are my options? How will each option affect the people in my life, including me? Which option is best for all involved? How can I contain the damage from the consequences that come from ANY option on the table? However, it is here that Hindsight chimes in again and my rational thinking goes all kablooee once more. That question–”How can I contain the damages from the consequences of ANY option?–asked over and over by the reel in my mind is constantly answered by Hindsight, who keeps reminding me that I can’t contain it; at least not all by myself. I have to rely on others to be satisfied with the options and be willing to participate in helping ease the consequences on the innocent parties like an angelic three year old named Ila. But Hindsight also reminds me that in my life, within my experiences, no matter how good my intentions are, no matter how sound the solutions I come up with may be when it comes to protecting my children, I cannot count on others in positions of power to cooperate with my vision, with my intentions, with my solutions, and therefore can’t completely offer a best case scenario to the innocent.
And so once again, I curse that blasted Hindsight because it seems, at least THIS time, he isn’t helping but instead complicating things much more than if I didn’t have him in my life. I have lost the ability (perhaps I never had it) to trust in what feels right. I no longer believe that it all comes out fine in the end. That is not the movie version of my life so far. All isn’t fine in many aspects. And so I am stuck readers, stuck in that afore mentioned mucky muddy mire. How does one make a decision when all choices seem to be complicated instead of cut and dry, when all choices need cooperation from other that I can’t rely upon, when each choice holds a barrel full of pain not only for me, but for those who never asked to be involved in the decisions in the first place? How does a person do what’s right, when one isn’t even sure of what that is?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Logan has lived in Glens Falls, NY all her life. By day, she is an educator with 20 years experience, a mom to Aidan and Gannan, her two teenage boys, a new mommy to a beautiful daughter, Ila, and wife to the love of her life, Jeffrey. By night, weekends and any spare time she can find, Logan writes. She loves memoir and also adores writing essays about the challenges of parenthood. This year she started a parenting blog called A Muddled Mother, an honest place where mothers aren’t afraid to speak of the complications and difficulties that we all inevitably experience. Logan has been published in various children’s and parenting magazines including Today’s Motherhood, Eye on Education, Faces, and Appleseed. Logan’s previous column for Hilltown Families, Snakes and Snails: Teenage Boys Tales ran bi-monthly from June 2010-Feb. 2011, sharing stories of her first time around as a parent of two teenage boys. — Check out Hindsight Parenting: Raising Kids the Second Time Around every first and third Tuesday of the month.
[Photo credit: (ccl) Jessica Kennedy]