Making Tough Decisions


Today, I chose to put my dog to sleep. He had a great life for 17 years and it was time but it was a really difficult decision. As I sat, thinking about all the great times we had (including me crying into his shoulder often during my custody battle), it got me thinking about the tough decisions we have to make throughout our life that may not be the best for us in the short term but are the right decision for the people (or animals) in our lives and are ultimately best for us in the long term.

I didn’t want Cullen (my dog) to go…

His absence from the house is great.

Our other dog is going to be a serious pain in the butt without him around.

He converted more people than I can count from dog fearers to dog lovers and could have had a few more in him.

So many of our friends have great memories and stories of their time with him and will miss him greatly.

I had to have tough discussions with my daughter and all of her friends, as this was the first experience with death for most of them.

It created a lot of havoc and tears and anger in my life. But…it was the best thing for Cullen.

Sometimes during divorce (and after), we have to make these decisions. The one’s that absolutely suck for us right now but are the right thing to do in the long run. We have to let go of our own pain, our own anger, and our own sadness to do the right thing.

These decisions are really hard.

They wrench your gut on a daily basis – as my daughter so wisely said, “I am getting a weird tingling feeling in my tummy! It’s horrible! I hate it soo much.” But, it’s a feeling we need to push through. We need to take a step back from all of those difficult emotions and get to the core. Sometimes, when you have a difficult time putting words and clear reasoning to your concerns, it’s a good time to pause.

Why am I struggling so much with this decision?

What are the reasons I want to hold on and fight?

Is it because it will make things more difficult for me today? Is there a deeper rationale?

Am I holding on to something that might make sense for me to let go of?

Will this make things better for those I love? And for me in the long run even though it may not feel like it now?

It’s important to take the time to reflect before you react and really connect with the right decision. You’ll know what it is…

These decisions hurt. They hurt deeply. Trust me, I know. But sometimes, they are for the best.

Through it all, make sure you lean on your community. They are so important in your life. I am so thankful for the people I have surrounding my daughter and me that are there, without judgment, whenever we need them.

Learn from me. Make the hard decisions. Your life will be so much better for them in the long run.


“Easy decisions, hard life. Hard decisions, easy life.”

– Jerzy Gregorak, Olympic Weightlifter and World Record Holder & author of The Happy Body

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