This blog is about to undergo an overhaul. I've wanted to change the name (which started out cute because this blog was just for my far-flung family, but now is oh-so-annoying) since BlogHer '09. I need to change the design. I'll probably move over to WordPress. I talked about it today with Monica and Craig, and they wanted to know what I want to say - what's my unifying theme?
That's a hard question. Have you noticed that there are unifying themes in peoples' lives? Sometimes you'll meet someone, and you'll learn their story, and it's completely obvious to you that they're going to be stuck in the same groove in their record (and everyone who is under 30 is going, "The what in their what?") until they figure out that that's their groove and they learn how to stop skipping. I knew a girl who was promiscuous - not because she wanted to have sex or even because she liked the guys she was having it with - but because she didn't know how to experience love any other way. And it was so stupidly obvious to me that she was going to keep repeating the same pattern over and over and over until she learned to have a more meaningful type of interaction, until she learned to value her partners and value herself... But she never saw. That was a lifetime ago, before husband, before kids, and no, Freudians, I am not talking about myself...
If I look carefully at my life, I can see some patterns that repeat. They're hard to articulate, because they're mine, but I'll try. One is that if I try too hard to plan things they all get screwed up, but if I just go with the flow the most amazing things happen. Another has to do with expectations - it's kind of Buddhist. Basically I'm happy when I don't have any expectations because everything is a pleasant surprise, but when I start expecting things to go a certain way and they inevitably don't I get all annoyed and sad. This one, I can see this one over and over and over in so many ways. So many of my stories boil down to, "everything would have been fine if she had just let go of her plans and her expectations, but she had to try to make things live up to some ideal or archetype of the way it should be, and it all went horribly wrong."
To be honest, though, not much goes horribly wrong with me. My life is pretty charmed. Sometimes that makes me feel guilty.
None of these ideas lend themselves to a pithy two or three word blog title.
I'm finding that as I get older, all the things I thought I knew are getting blurry. The things I used to think were SO important seem kind of pointless. For example, I used to have a lot of ideas about childbirth and baby feeding and all that crunchy granola crap, and you know what? My kids have been in school for a couple of years now and no one has ever asked me how I fed them as infants or whether or not I had an epidural. It just doesn't matter anymore. It makes me hesitate to presume to know anything now, because what if I look back 5 or 7 years from now and that, too, is pointless?
Then I started thinking about some of the major blog categories, other than "mommyblog," and whether or not I'd fit into one of those. I'm not a chef, I'm not at all crafty, I suck at decorating, I'm not a photographer, I'm not even an expert mother (the jury will be out on whether or not I'm even a reasonably successful mother for another 20 years or so), I'm not religious, I can't give advice... Heck, half the time when I write about something I'm trying to work out how I feel about it as I'm writing it. I'll start with a general idea of what I want to talk about and where I want to go, but I never quite know where I'm going to end up.
What do I do here?
I tell stories about my kids, things I want to remember someday when they're grown and I've forgotten the details. I try to be real about what motherhood is really like - not the made-for-TV version that we're sold by Hallmark but the real deal, and I struggle to do that in such a way that it won't embarrass my kids later. I share my opinions about things that are going on. Sometimes I write crazy Dr. Seussy poems or songs.
I can't think of a thing. Not a single thing. Can you?