Why I’m Not a Blogger.
by Christie Mellor
For any of you keeping track out there, you might’ve noticed that my columns have become rather, er, sparse in the past several months. There’s been a certain amount of life going on. And I guess I just don’t have the Blogger’s Heart. I admire people who can keep a daily or weekly log of their thoughts and activities, especially the ones who can write with humor and intelligence. I just haven’t especially had much of a “Mommy Blogger” Head these past several months. Ironically, since I was chosen (along with a group of other talented “Mommy Tracked” writers) as one of
Babble’s “50 Best Mommy Bloggers” for 2009. And I know I’m not anywhere near as prolific as most of those other women. Is it because my kids are growing up? And maybe I just don’t have that much more to say on the subject?
In all my books I guess I’ve tried to get across one simple point above all others: Don’t make your children the center of your universe, make them a part of your life. Have a Life. Introduce your children to it; give them the tools—as best you can—to navigate their own lives. Help them to be independent. Encourage them to have independent lives, and share your life with them -- your interesting, creative, joyous life. Doesn’t that sound pretty simple? And, well, kind of more interesting than obsessing over getting them into “the best” middle school or fretting over every activity they do in their spare time? (Spare time! As if.)
But, well. I can say this same thing a hundred different ways. And after a while it sort of feels like that bed that you keep having to make, or that toilet that needs cleaning, even though you could swear you’ve cleaned it at least once a week for twenty years. Why won’t it just stay clean? Why are there dust bunnies under the bed, dammit? Didn’t I just sweep in here, like, two weeks ago?
There’s no shortage of good writers who are happy to discuss the ins and outs of being a mother or parent on a daily basis. And thank goodness, because right now, that interesting life of mine is becoming a tiny part of another big picture. And I’m finding the big picture slightly daunting. My elderly father is losing large chunks of his memory at an alarming rate. My husband was laid off his job last March and freelance work has been sporadic. I’m waiting for my next book to be published and in the meantime I’m looking for—and trying to create—work. Without an inordinate amount of panic. It’s been, ahem, rough going. Obviously, as a writer, I’ve shared my share of personal details with total strangers. But there’s that thing that I inherited from my parents, that stiff-upper-lip thing handed down from one generation of private, no-nonsense people to the next—which restrains me from wanting to share intimate details of my life, especially in times of trouble and stress. I know, hard times should be fodder for a writer, but instead I just want to batten down the hatches.