Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Five Degrees: Toughest Choice

This post continues the week of StevieB's Five Degree themes.

There's a theory that, at the quantum level, every probability must manifest itself. The inherent paradox is resolved by the creation of multiple realities, one for each probabilistic outcome. Let me help illustrate this concept with a simple example: Say you're reading this post right now and you're board. You could either continue reading (hoping I get to some sort of point soon) or you could click over to some other blog, thereby single-handedly forking the Universe.

If even the smallest of choices irrevocably fractures space-time, what must the big ones do?

I also find the phrasing for this exercise interesting. We're to write about our "toughest choice", not our toughest decision. What's the difference? There can be no decisions without choices. Choices are presented by circumstance; decisions are made by the human heart and mind.

You can have easy choices with tough decisions and vice-versa. Let's say you're painting the kitchen. The paint store offers many choices, all at more or less the same cost. But the decision can be excruciating. If you're a house painter, you'd love working for my friend, Joe. You're guaranteed to double or triple your original estimate as you paint and repaint his kitchen different colors. Then again, you just might be driven mad.

On the other hand you may be faced with tough choices, but with an obvious decision. A person may have legal directives stipulating his wish not to be kept alive using extraordinary life support measures. His loved ones have the choice between honoring those wishes or prolonging his life as long as possible. Those choices suck, but the man was responsible and thoughtful enough to make the decision easier on his family.

Why am I over-analyzing this? Why don't I just talk about the time almost exactly three years ago, when I decided to leave my JB and the life we'd spent ten years building together and move to Alabama to be with Joey? Or how I decided three months later to come back home? Or how JB and I decided, after months of counseling, to make things work?

Sometimes, when faced with tough choices and a lack of courage, the easiest decision is to avoid making one.

1 comment:

  1. A very valid, and interesting view on the point. I like it; I like it a lot. Thanks for sharing!