Bad options suck. Bad options are mind thrashing and nearly impossible to deliberate over. Will someone else please choose the best bad option for me?
Chapter 3 in A Strange Path to Freedom is about making a choice between two life changing options. Personally, both options sucked for me. The first option was extremely frightening, because I was told the government rarely loses. I wouldn’t exactly call that encouraging. It’s like telling the Carolina Panthers to be prepared to have their necks broken and most likely lose the game anyway. (Not good). I didn’t like or necessarily agree with the second option either.
Regardless of gender, age, political stance or education, many of us have wrestled with ourselves during sleepless nights of trying to choose one of the best bad options.
I have a friend who has fallen into numbness because she is trying to decide whether to continue to stay in her marriage or cut bait. She loves him and they had exciting future plans. But on the other hand she knows deep down he is not what she really wants. Does she continue wasting years and heartache with him, because she is scared to be alone? Both options are bad. What to do, what to do!
Most people are all too quick to tell others what to do. “You should do this, you should do that. Let me tell you what to do”. I can’t stand that, who do they think they are? Please do not should on me!
Choosing the best bad option, comes at a price, possibly a deep sadness and many times a change in life. But it’s not fatal, plus it can force a new you; a different you. I felt as if my head was going to explode with options, wild scenarios and “what ifs”. Once I chose the best bad option I had a sense of relief, direction and finality.
When my friend asked me what she should do, I simply said, “I don’t know, but I believe you know. The answer is already in you. It’s in your heart”.
Can you reflect on a time you felt trapped because you had to make a choice between two bad options? Give birth or abort? Under go chemo or not? Stay in your job and get sexually harassed or quit knowing you will struggle to put food on the table and pay bills on time? It sucks, I know.
After choosing, how did you feel? Better, worse? Regrets? Free? Strengthen? How has your life changed since you made a decision?
Sharing our personal experiences with others can be empowering for those in the middle of the muck. Chapter 3 was a painstaking chapter to write and horribly difficult to reflect on, but like I said, it wasn’t fatal. My youngest son’s baseball coach used to say, “A setback is only a setup for a comeback”. What was your comeback?