Overheard from my kitchen the first week of this adventure:
T-man: Why does mom have to write a blog? (delivered as if asking about a homework assignment)
This was met by silence since Bear had no idea why I’d be doing such a crazy thing. To them, a blog is an assignment they have in technology class — as in, “It’s blogging week” followed by “UGH!” Apparently free form writing is akin to slow, painful torture for these two and they simply could not grasp anyone doing it of their own free will. That feeling is so foreign to me…I have all these words bouncing around inside my head, refusing to slow down until they have somewhere to go, and writing gives them a home.
In their eyes, though, I might as well have established my own territory here: one technically within our house but with its own governing laws and language.
- Thou shalt not interrupt mom if she’s typing. If you begin speaking and she holds up one finger (no, not that finger), wait quietly until she turns her attention to you or go away if you realize it can hold.
- Thou shalt respect the first answer given during the writing process. If you ask a question and get a response do not repeatedly ask said question, forcing mom to repeat said answer over and over again. This will result in a regrettably unpleasant outburst.
- Thou shalt respect the random moments of inspiration that cause mom’s eyes to glaze over while she frantically searches for a pen.
- Thou shalt not touch the laptop. Even if you’ve forgotten to charge the old one. And you just want to finish this one show on Netflix. Amen.
Only four basic tenets. That’s pretty reasonable, right?
But I could tell they were still struggling with the concept that I was doing it at all, and my short, simple explanation of “I like to write” wasn’t really clearing things up. Then I realized the problem: they haven’t had a lot of experience with me doing things that are very me-centered. I stay/work at home so they see me doing tasks that keep the house running — extremely glamorous things like laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning, getting them ready for school, and being their daily chauffeur. Even volunteering in their classrooms, which I do because I love it (helping the teachers and kids gets me that teaching-fix), would still strike them as being about, well, them.
So I just kept telling them that I love to write and it makes me happy. And they watched me pick up the laptop every day to do what I love.
Fast forward a week and a half: Bear leaves with BrightSide to pick up our lawn mower and I comment that I’ve got some time before they come back with breakfast. (Because what’s a Saturday morning without some biscuits, y’all?) T-man looks at me and says, “Well, you can work on your blog.”
That’s right, big man. You’re getting the hang of it now.