YOU Decide

Katrina - Norton, Massachusetts
Entered on December 4, 2008

Decision: “the act of or need for making up one’s mind” (www.dictionary.com). The key word there is “one’s.” Ever since I was little, I have always made my decisions based on what everybody else thought I should do. As independent as I was with my school work starting at a very young age, I always needed somebody to tell me exactly what it was they wanted from me, from teachers to parents and friends to boyfriends. Now that I’m older and living on my own in an off-campus apartment, I need to make decisions for myself. From those really pressing matters like “should I drop this class?” to the issues involving which flavor of Ben and Jerry’s goes best with studying for an exam. I believe that people should base their decisions on what they believe is right for them.

Earlier this semester, I was torn between trying out for the BSC girls’ basketball team and joining Refined Movement, a hip hop dance team at BSC. In high school, I gave up dance, which I had been doing since I was 3, in order to play basketball. I thought that playing basketball was definitely what I wanted to do, plus I knew that my dad would be proud, considering he is an ex-professional basketball player. It was a great four years, just working hard, playing ball, and having fun; however, when I got to college, I wondered if that was what I really wanted to do. I was looking at all the extracurricular activities, and one of the girls from Refined Movement approached me, and asked if I was interested in dance. After talking to her, I weighed my options: continue to play basketball, or pick up dance once again.

I consulted my mom, expecting her to tell me what to do. “Do what makes you happy,” she said, “What do you think that you should do?”

“Well, I was hoping you would tell me,” I responded.

“Katie,” she said, “it’s about time you started making your own decisions. It doesn’t matter what other people think. Do what you think is right for you. If it’s what makes you happy, then it’s the right decision.”

I had never approached a situation like this. I knew in the back of my mind that I was somewhat of a ventriloquist’s dummy to my mom, because I pretty much let her dictate my life. I didn’t mind that though. I liked the structure it provided. Now, though, my mom is tired of being my ventriloquist. When I’m living on my own for good, I will have to make these decisions without consulting an outside source. In the end, I decided to pick up my dancing shoes, and put away the high tops for now. I made my own decision, for the first time in my life. As much as my friends and family thought that I should continue on and play basketball at the college level, I decided that the right decision for me would be dance. So whether you are trying to think of what movie would be perfect for a girls only movie night, or what you should major in and dedicate your life to, I think you should do what you think is right. As long as you truly believe in the decision you have made, it shouldn’t matter what everybody else thinks. They make their own decisions, you make your own decisions, and I’ll make mine.