Posted by: Morgan | October 17, 2010

But Y?

So lately I’ve been thinking about the reasons why I choose to do what I do. I am well aware that I’m not a huge researcher when it comes to making decisions, basing my choices more off of how I feel about something, what makes logical sense to me, what people I trust say about the matter and most importantly, of course, what I believe God wants me to do. I’m a fairly confident person, so I’m sure in the past I would have almost always said I had solid, good reasons for doing the things I did. Sitting here right now, I’m not sure that’s true.

It was while we were looking back over our reasoning for circumcising our son that I realized too often my reason for doing something was simply ‘that’s what I always thought I’d do’ or, even worse in my opinion, ‘that’s what everyone else does’. We had planned on circumcising our son and had chosen to have it done by a Jewish Rabbi, as we felt that the procedure done by him was done with less pain and more respect than a typical medical doctor would do it. A couple times before he was born, I asked Caleb if he was sure that we wanted to circumcise Logan, which he always was. I asked him a couple days after Logan was born, too. Finally, when Logan was twelve days old, I scheduled the circumcision with the Rabbi (he’s from out of town and hadn’t been in the area until then) for a week later. That night I asked Caleb again if we were sure. He asked me why I kept bringing it up and I realized I had been having second thoughts. I wanted to be sure, because once we did it we couldn’t undo it.

That’s when Caleb asked me what reasons I would have for maybe not wanting to do it. And I had no idea. Even more profound to me was when he next asked me what reasons I had for doing it, and I had no idea. After a period of time of thinking all I could come up with was ‘that’s just what you do’. Caleb and I began looking into it and really examining our reasoning. It was amazing to us that both of us were making a decision with the main reason being ‘that’s just what you do’. That was not a good enough reason for either of us. To finish the story of what we decided specifically with this, we never did find a good reason for us to have him circumcised, so we canceled the appointment.

That got me thinking, though. How often did I make decisions based solely on ‘that’s just what you do’? If the answer to that question was even occasionally, I was not ok with that. As I sat outside in the grass with my two babies, looking at the sky through the leaves of the sapling that grows directly outside our home and waving at the ‘tars’ as they passed us, I started working through decisions I have made in the past couple years and really pondering through the reasons behind the decisions. One that actually surprised me when it stumped me was the decision to have children. To be honest, I’m still thinking through that one. In no way do I regret the decision to start having children, because I absolutely adore them, but I am curious as to my original reasoning. The only thing I’ve come up with, besides “that’s what I’ve always wanted or thought I would do”, is that I had thought it would make me happy. And it has definitely done that. I don’t know very many people who can make me smile or laugh as much as Emma does. The reasoning behind having more than one child came a lot faster, as we actually had some solid reasons for not wanting an only child.

Now I’m trying to work through some things I have been thinking about recently and really evaluate my reasons for deciding one thing or another. It’s been very intriguing and, in a way, oddly bizarre. I have always been the one who just *knows* what I want and what I like. I am able to make snap decisions and point to what I want over anything else. But it’s always just based on that snap judgement ‘I like that’ or ‘I think this’. Maybe this is why other people take so long to make decisions! Maybe other people actually go through the deep thinking through ‘Why would I really choose this?’ every time they make a decision. That may sound very normal to some of you, but for me it’s a foreign concept, but one I’m really excited to explore more from now on. I’m excited to ask myself ‘But why?’ a lot in the next stage of my life.



  1. Glad you did some thinking on the circ. Our next meeting is on that. Should be good. Love the post.

    • Alexa told me about that for next month. I’m excited to see (and participate in) the discussion. I’m also really intrigued to hear from that L&D nurse!

  2. As a boldly opinionated, yet overly-analytical and endlessly researched individual, I would like to welcome you to a deeper way of thinking. It’s a very mature realization to come to (i don’t mean to sound patronizing!) that many, if not most people never reach. I look on it as a facet of my faith. Being a Christian, in and of itself is going against the grain. If every fibre of my spiritual being is counter-culture, then I need to reflect on my choices with equal care toward staying in line with that spirituality. Some decisions are spiritually neutral and so can be culture (what everyone else is doing) or counter culture dependent on your snap impressions. But some are more hazy (like circ) and some are definitely places where our choice seems irrelevant or innocuous to the world regardless of path, but where the way of the world would be to the detriment of our spiritual persons in Christ.

    I certainly wouldn’t wish on you my worrisome, detail-focused analysis of every iota, but am happy for your own realizations toward self-evaluation. I thank God for allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal this to you and pray for marvelous fruit to come from these seeds of thought!

  3. Here is a GREAT site on that subject:
    check it out.

    • Thanks, Dolores! I’m really glad we ended up making the choice we did. We couldn’t have taken it back if we had gone the other way, and I think I would have regretted it.

  4. Thank YOU for not letting yourself be hypnotized by un-examined notions of parental prerogative. Your friend Lindsay in absolutely right; this is the high road.
    Irreversible is the key word in the discussion, for sure. As a Registered Nurse for over twenty years, I have yet to determine how strapping a helpless baby down and cutting off healthy, protective, functioning and erogenous tissue from his penis has anything to do with health.

    There is no compelling evidence to indicate that the practice is therapeutic. It is elective surgery, and parents do not have the right to consent to it nor do doctors have the ethical right to follow that consent and perform the operation.

    A baby boy is going to be a man some day, with his own ideas and his own preferences for his body and his sexual experience. Neither the doctor nor the parents will be the ones living out the consequences of the removal of the most sensitive and protective part of his sex organ.

    I have been fighting this battle for almost three decades.

    I hope and pray that this will be the year that doctors take a stand to protect the rights of every child placed in their care.

    I hope and pray that this will be the year doctors take a stand against un-necessary and mutilating genital surgery on non-consenting human beings.

    I hope and pray that this will be the year that doctors stop the unscientific nonsense that is routine infant circumcision.

    I hope and pray that this will be the year that doctors first do no harm.


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