Some days you make right decisions. Some days you make wrong decisions. Some days the choice is hard. What IS the right decision? This week my mind has been overly consumed with this topic.
My son left for a 7th grade trip with his honor’s class on Monday. They were making the 600 mile trek to our nation’s capital. They’ve been anticipating this trip all school year. Sean started running a fever Sunday afternoon…but no other symptoms. When he climbed into bed later that night he was feeling okay but when his alarm went off at 3:00am for his 4:00am departure Monday morning, his fever was back. Again, no other symptoms. We had to make a quick decision. We called his teacher for some guidance. What do we do? We ran through the scenarios. Could this just be a 24 hour bug? What if we keep him home and by Tuesday he is feeling normal again and misses the entire highly anticipated trip? What if we stick him on the bus with a bottle of Ibuprofen for the 12 hour bus ride and he feels fine when he gets there? What if we put him on the bus and he doesn’t improve in 24 hours and… we’ve stuck him on the bus with a bunch of other people??
Folks I was one of those moms. I stuck my fever induced kid on a bus and sent him on his way…(But with the understanding if things got worse my husband or I would be hopping in our car to retrieve him.)
As far as I can remember, I’ve never had to make a decision like this before. My husband and I usually err on the side of extreme caution. Partially because neither of us are natural risk takers and partially because Sean is our only child and every thing we do is trial and error. It’s not like my parents who had two other kids to “practice” on before they got to me…okay, I’m kind of kidding…but not really. 🙂 With one child you don’t get do-overs to “get it right” with siblings number two or three. Okay, in all seriousness, I do know there are no practice rounds when it comes to raising our children. We get one shot at raising and caring for every single one of them. We make the best decisions we can. And that’s all we can do.
Earlier this year we used caution when Sean developed a fever and we decided to cancel a trip to Nashville. For Christmas, we had surprised him and gotten him concert tickets to his first real concert. He was disappointed he couldn’t go, but it was the right call. He felt miserable for over a week with flu-like symptoms, coughing, congestion and runny nose.
It’s Wednesday and Sean has now been an Ibuprofen packing tourist since our quick pre-sunrise decision on Monday. When he’s taking the medicine he is fine but when he isn’t, his fever returns and he begins to wilt. I just spoke to him on the phone. He is feeling okay this morning and still has no other symptoms. And, so far…no fever this morning. YAY! I still have no clue whether this was the wisest decision. It was definitely not an ideal way of taking in the sights in Washington DC but he did tell me he is having a good time and is glad to be there.
Once again, to all parents out there, I’m sorry for being one of those moms.
I hope I don’t have to make snappy parenting decisions like this again for a while. My heart can’t take it. I’ve been trying to rest on Philippians 4: 6-9 but I will be honest…when it comes to my child…it’s hard! And yet, it’s certainly no fun living in a state of chronic second guessing and all the mental beatings I tend to give myself!
Just keeping it real today folks.
And trying, once again, to park my heart here:
“Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses every thought, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things. Do what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4: 6-9