a preemptive defense
“[Mom] also drove my sisters and myself crazy by folding the most personal moments of our childhood lives into her talks as further illustrations of God’s hand on us, or to make points about how to raise a family.”
-Frank Schaeffer, Crazy for God
When I read this, a tinge of worry hit me wondering if I might hear a similar thing one day. Things like, “mom, how could you? That’s so embarrassing,” echoed through my head. And although I started this blog as a way to record these swiftly passing years, realizing that these funny moments, questions, and exploratory days are evolving faster into blurred memories than I care to admit, I also recognize that at least at this point, what I write and how I write my kids will be how they, not just I, remember their early selves. I hope that these written encouters will somehow give my kids privy to who they really are, long after the rest of the world has bombarded them with all that they’re “supposed to be.”
Easy for anyone to see, our life is far from a prime time reality show or some other limelight family, so rather than using this space to piously display ourselves as models of how things/children/home/parents ought to be, I offer these public glimpses into our home in effort to authentically share the good and bad alike. Of course, the good is always more palatable for the ego. I imagine that Liam will laugh one day to read about recently questioning me, “Mom, is the penis the leader of the private parts?” Or at some point hearing Burke’s full body chuckle when he reads about approaching me and Mark separately (before we found out we were pregnant) to ask if we could trade Blythe in for a new baby because “this girl scratches and bites.”
But maybe they won’t. Maybe in some unintentional way on my part, they will feel exposed, exploited, or embarrassed. If that’s the case, let me take note here to tell them, “I’m sorry.” (It’s not the first time, and I’m sure it won’t be the last.) But, knowing each of your love for laughter and stories now, I’m anticipating laughter.