I used to have a roommate who never seemed able to make a decision. She was constantly flipping coins and reciting "eeny meeny miney moe." I was always impressed that she could leave her fate to the toss of a coin, even for small things like what to have for dinner. I think I've always been fairly decisive and also fairly able to live with the decisions I've made. I'm not much for regret, generally, preferring to use those occasions for learning and making different mistakes later on.
It didn't take me long to realize that my roommate wasn't actually leaving her fate to the toss of a coin. She often overturned the result, using the coin toss as a decision-making tool. If she didn't like the way it landed, it helped her figure out which path she actually wanted.
Not long ago, an old high school friend was shocked to learn that I was not a T (in Myers-Briggs), a thinker like her, but an F, a feeler. She's always seen me as an intellectual, so I guess it follows that an intellectual would be a thinker. But no. I make every single decision based on feelings: either I imagine myself on the other side of the decision and imagine how I feel with different results, or I go with my gut, an intuition of rightness. The problem with this approach is that feelings are fickle. You can mourn the passing of an old way of life at the same time that you rejoice in the new. And fear can be tricky: is it the kind of fear that you should overcome, the kind that keeps us from growing or doing things that are good for us but scary; or the kind of fear that keeps us from doing dangerous things, the kind that is correct and should be heeded?
I haven't really blogged much about it (mostly because I haven't had the time), but I have really been struggling with the decision of whether to move to Toronto. I said we're going to do it, and we've been taking all the right steps in that direction. But I have this niggling feeling that we could get to Toronto, swept up in its excitement and busy-ness, and find ourselves longing for the quiet pace of G-town. I worry that we're being hasty, that moving to Toronto will in fact make for less family time than more, and perhaps we should take more time to consider the options and give the local job market more of a chance to hire Sugar D.
I keep searching for cues from the universe, trying to read the signs of where we should go, but it seems like the universe just keeps throwing us more options, more choices. There is a reason that I prefer to shop at our tiny little liquor store with only five choices of South African wine; the big box liquor store is dizzying, and no matter how long I spend trying to choose, I usually end up going with one of the five choices offered by the other little store. Clearly, I don't do well with a lot of choice. (But mmm, wine...)
I keep hoping that at some point with this move things will take on a life of their own and we will just have to go with the flow, to live with the decisions we've made. But it seems like just about every moment is a new decision point. Stop or go forward? Yay or nay? Today or tomorrow or next week?
Just over a week ago, we decided to throw ourselves into Toronto, that we could probably make ourselves happy in our either place, but we may as well go with Toronto, that the uncertainy and indesiveness is what's stressing us out. The very next business day, my manager announced that a new position had been created in my unit, a more senior position that I would love to apply for. Four days after that, Sugar D got an email about a job prospect not too far from here. Needless to say our earlier decision to focus on Toronto is null and void. We're back to oscillating.
However, these recent developments have shed some light for me. Imagining the possibility of staying in G-town with Sugar D only using an hour a day for travel to work instead of his current four feels like heaven. I feel almost euphoric thinking about staying in our home, proceeding with the rest of my ten-year plan for the gardens, proceeding with the bathroom and kitchen reno next summer, working for the current employer that I know and love, staying with the current daycare, to which Swee'pea has finally adapted enough that I'm not afraid to say it, and having enough time and energy to send good food with him, to stay with our current scattered and lovely family doctor, and the young and smart pediatrician, to have family mornings again and eat Sugar D's curries during the week... that's what I want.
This weekend we fixed and painted and purged and cleaned and hung pictures in preparation for the virtual tour filming tomorrow morning, which we're still going ahead with. Maybe all this is just the universe's way of getting us to declutter our house, to finally throw out the dead dryer in the basement and the picnic table impersonating the Leaning Tower of Pisa in our backyard, to put up a fresh new house number on our old bricks instead of the pathetic scrap of wood twist-tied to the wrought iron railing of our porch, to put out various belongings that we no longer use on our front yard and watch neighbours cart them away to new usefulness. (especially sweet was the young student who knocked on our door this morning and politely asked if he could rescue our tropical house plants, sitting out there nearly dead, and nurture them back to life -- yes please, we've been horribly negligent since Swee'pea was born! -- AND politely introduced himself and shook my hand before going on his way, and the other students who were laden down on their way home from the grocery store yesterday but still found the wherewithall to take away our four seventies chairs that I grew up sitting on every summer at the cottage... I can't tell you the pleasure I get from having neighbours choose to take on these things of mine.)
Which isn't to say that we're definitely not moving to Toronto. Only that we're putting our plans on hold, to explore the possibilities that may allow us to stay here.
Fingers crossed this local job comes through for Sugar D...