Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Why I Write

As a child, I drew to escape when I couldn't get attention.  Creating a whole world through the pencil or the crayon felt safer and more friendly than the playground where my slow speed, puffy breath and awkward social skills could not be hidden.  

As an adult, I found writing, not as a means of escape, but as a method of discovery and preservation. I found out patterns as I wrote, ideas about parenting, life, religion, family, domestic tasks, errands, politics, everything jumbled in my brain and needed an outlet, particularly in the years when more than half my children were under the age of 10.

But as they've grown older, the stories get less cute, less cuddly, not because I love them any less, but the issues they deal with, have sharper edges, and the protective part of me as Mom, does not want to either expose them when they struggle, or to preserve for all the world, adolescent awkwardness.  I don't like remembering when I was 11-16. and I'm of the opinion, no one else does either.  

So creating the stories of a mommy blogger become more difficult.

I can stay in the safe shallows with my four year old, but the dangerous thing is to go out the door, to talk about the 7 year old who needs to grow up more, the nine year old as she runs through fourth grade, the trials of a 6th grader, the silence of my eight year old, the ever kind 8th grader, the sixteen year old who runs and the senior who tries very hard to pretend she doesn't have a crazy army of brothers and sisters behind her.  

The college students skype visit, and I can tell about the running gags we have over Taylor Swift and minions.  The Shake it Off singer stalks my 8th grader --we always put it on the radio if she's in the room, and the minions, have begun assembling around my college girl.  The joke annoys, and yet they delight that we think of it, and keep doing it.  The funny becomes more evasive as they get older, because we deal with bad grades, bad behavior, responsibilities, teams, drivers tests, SATs, college visits, recommendations, jobs, dates, curfews, computers and the real world.  

So now I write for me, but that seems boring.

Who wants to hear about my death threats to the Suburban for daring not to start today?  Or my ongoing promise to the dryer to use it for scrap metal if it fails to do its duty?  My i-phone came today, and my daughters pounced on it, I suspect they don't trust me with either technology or mechanical things.  

So I asked God, (and that's always dangerous), what I should do.  Today, I was asked to pray.  By one friend for her family, by another, for her job, by a third, for a friend who is losing her apartment.  I was asked to pray over and over and over again. It became absurd.  But it also was an answer.   So I prayed for my friend for her family.   I prayed for my friend for her job, and I prayed for the friend losing her apartment.  I'm taking those prayers tomorrow to the mass.

Why do I write? Because there are a million stories, some so heartbreaking, they feel like spun glass beauty, destined to shatter, and in those million stories, there are a million miracles waiting to happen.  I think the writing part of life is now about listening to the stories that need prayers, and writing what I can from them.  

Less of a mommy blog, more of a living collection of stories.   (I know. Tomorrow there will be a story about the kids playing zombie tag and Paul saying, "Lots of Me" like the characters on Phineas and Ferb), but I think it's closer to what this blog is supposed to become than not.  

Thanks for listening to me write all over the page and make a mess.   See you tomorrow, after the papal mass.  

1 comment:

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