I’ve had an existential crisis of late. Unlike in high school, this crisis doesn’t involve reading and re-reading Camus while listening to The Cure on repeat. Or Joy Division. Or Bauhaus. Or…oh, you get the point.
Also unlike in high school, nobody has died. On the contrary, somebody has grown–two somebodies, actually.
When 3B and Jewel were smaller, it was cute (maybe) to write about their boogers and poop, but now they’re eight and (almost) five. What third grader wants their dad writing about their poop on the interwebz? In the case of 3B, he not only reads, but reads everything obsessively. At the grocery store, I’d almost rather take him through the checkout lane with all the candy than the one “for kids” with all the magazines.
“Daddy, why did Kim Kardashian do that?”
Easier to say no to a pack of gum than to answer that question. And while Jewel can’t read, she’s as close to reading as she is to being five. Further, if there’s anything she loves, it’s her privacy, when she wants it. That doesn’t stop her from taking a Lady Godiva perambulation about the house from time to time…but, see? Should I even mention that?
Because her brother could read about it and then tease her. Or she could read about it and wail for her privacy, but the internet never forgets, so once it’s written, there are no backsies.
But if I’m not going to write about my kids, on this blog that I created for that purpose, do I even keep writing here? I had originally meant it to be the place where Mom kept in touch with her newest grandkids, but then she had the temerity to die right after 3B was born. But the kids have many–many, many–aunts, uncles, great-aunts, great-uncles, grandparents, cousins and so on who keep up with them here. Or did, back when I wrote here regularly.
Have I already pocket vetoed this blog?
But what about the other person this blog serves–me? MetroDad always joked that writing his blog was cheaper than therapy, which is true. I’m not always sure that it’s as effective as my favorite form of therapy–riding my bike–but is sure is cheaper. Maybe writing tales of my kids builds a bridge out of the exile from them I inhabit each day at work. You know…exile, “That sensation of a void within which never left us, that irrational longing to hark back to the past or else to speed up the march of time, and those keen shafts of memory that stung like fire.” (Camus)
Beyond my mental health needs, possibly caused by years of reading Camus and listening to The Cure on repeat, this blog also allows me to write what I want to.
As a professional communicator, I spend my day writing (and reading and editing), but never about anything as engaging as boogers and poop. So is this my creative writing outlet? Hm. Maybe I could make up stories about the kids…except, you know, ethics. But if this is my outlet, do I let down my guard and post everything I love to write, which includes poetry? To misquote Cracker, the world needs another bad poetry blog like I need a hole in my head.
So, perhaps the point here is the sorting out of issues like this. If I can be honest, perhaps it will be more of a gift to 3B and Jewel than a recounting of their first steps. They can learn how to avoid falling down by reading my accounts of doing so–and hopefully of how I recovered.