Yesterday there was an ice cream social at the kids’ new school. It was cute and thankfully held indoors due to 95 degree temperatures so we didn’t melt faster than the icy treats they handed out. The kids ran around and played. Well, AJR did. Olivia sort of clung to my feet and begged me for snacks, which really is sort of the norm anyway. I met a few new moms that have kids in Olivia’s class and made some polite small talk.
I always enjoy meeting fellow moms and as the kids get older and become involved in more things our social circle rapidly increases within the small town we live in. Yesterday’s event and really the upcoming start of the school year has me thinking. For awhile now I’ve often wondered whether this blog has a limited run. One that will expire once the kids entered the world of “real school” forcing me to severely scale back out of respect for their privacy.
This blog is two years young and functioned as a diary/baby book of sorts that I’ve shared publicly and always felt safe in doing so. Raising babies, toddlers, and preschoolers is hard. It’s one thing to talk about the trials and tribulations of sleep training and teething.But small kids = small problems; big kids = big problems. Can I air my parenting grievances as they get older?
Do I want the new moms I’m meeting, the ones that that don’t really know me or my children yet, making judgments based upon a blog entry? Most of my entries make me seem like I hate my station as a stay at home mom. Someone even asked my husband once whether I enjoyed being a SAHM based off what they read in my blog. That comment made me feel vulnerable about what I’ve written because I always thought that it was clear that “I love my kids….buuuutttt let me keep it real about the parts that sort of suck”. I’ve been in a protective bubble where the only feedback has been positive, surrounded by comments that they feel the same way, their kids do the same thing, etc. Those comments helped me find validation in my feelings and often times helped me to feel less alone in this parenting gig.
But I’m not so naive that we don’t live in a world where moms and parents are shamed for every decision they make. I’ve gone down the blackhole of comments on a controversial (or not even) article posted on Scary Mommy. Again, I don’t have a national readership. In all honesty, I have my mom, family, and a few close friends that show their support to make up my “readership”. The people that really know me and understand that while I may bitch about a Target run gone awry, that I’m a good mom and I love my children fiercely. Can someone who only met me one or two times at a school pick-up line say the same thing? Or is she going to think I’m a stark-raving lunatic who probably shouldn’t be left alone with her children? Listen, I am a crazy person, but I would much rather that potential mom friend take the time to discover that on her own the natural way.
But even any judgments about me aside, I’m more concerned about any potential judgment my kids my face based upon a passionate rant I’ve made public. Especially any future teachers that may inadvertently read something that shapes their viewpoint. My kids are far from perfect, but like all our kids they have so many redeeming and wonderful qualities that by far outweigh any negative. But, if I’m being honest, how much fun would it be to read a blog about how great my kids are all the time? And how realistic would it be to only focus on that? Kids are turds. Everyone’s kid is a turd sometimes. I’m just choosing to write about it in a (hopefully) relatable way to find the humor in these situations that can otherwise drive us crazy.
This blog as small and insignificant as it is, has been therapeutic to write. Its identity is so wrapped up in my kids and my role as their mom that I’m not even sure what I would write about without that. Perhaps that’s the harder reality to face. I’m not sure if this is the year where I have to make that judgment call but it’s in the back of my mind. Is anyone even reading this where it’s really a concern or am I over-analyzing as I’m wont to do? I don’t know. I suppose once they’re back in school I’ll have a little more free time to figure that part out. As well as make a dentist appointment that I haven’t had time to this summer.