I’ve been blogging for over a month now (!) and I’ve gotten a bit of a better sense of my voice in this virtual world.
I started out hesitant about spending too much time on parenting but it’s clear that that’s really where the focus of this blog (and my life) lies. A close second is about writing – and the project of figuring out who and what I want to be in the world, separate from but informed by my role as a mom.
When we started down the road of figuring out how to get pregnant, I poked around the internet for good resources that could be a beacon as we went through the experience. A Practical Wedding served as a kind of banister for my wedding planning – a community of smart, sassy and practical folks (mostly women – hey) approaching their weddings with the care, world-view and common sense I shared. And the narrative of Meg (APW’s EIC) gave me, along with many folks, a framework to lean on as we planned our weddings and charted new marriages and other events in our life. When it comes to family-making or family-growing, there are myriad of personal blogs detailing individual stories or big, even corporate blogs that are so broad they lose the unique and specific insights of a personal voice. I did not find any place on the internet that was quite the right mix of personal and community stories of people kinda like me going about growing their families. So that’s the kind of space I’m endeavoring to carve out here, with all due humility about what I have to offer.
It’s hard to get past blogging as a fairly self-indulgent exercise – hell, it is self-indulgent. And yet I know that it is only through the truly specific and personal that you can transcend into universal connection and foster empathy and compassion. So that’s where this blog will begin – my personal story, my specific experience, and my particular opinions. I hope, though, it does not end there – I hope to have space for other personal, specific stories and voices and opinions.
So my goals for this blog are as follows:
- Write honestly – Writing about parenting is very heavily traversed terrain so avoiding cliches and being original is not so easy. Starting from a personal and specific place is the only way I know how to do that. So this is not meant to be a clever space, a hip space or a humorous space – though bonus if those things happen here. It’s an honest space first and foremost and the rest – including sassiness, humor, some wit and cleverness, some sadness perhaps, some smartness, some cuteness and beyond – will flow from there.
- Share my story while protecting the privacy of my son. My original hesitation in writing about parenting was not wanting my son’s life shared on the internet before he even knows what that is. So far I’ve seen there is a definite way to be honest and open without detailing the private particulars of Baby O. So he will remain Baby O for now, the Wife will be the Wife and I will (for now, anyway) continue to write as the Opinionated Mama.
- Explore – and share – my world-view and vantage point I bring to parenting. And ideally foster some community from that perspective.
And what is that perspective anyway? I am progressive-minded but practical – as a two-mom family, my vantage is shaped by the inequity of laws that distribute rights and opportunities for families and a culture that is too narrow to accept all our families. I’m also excited by the opportunity to structure our life unbound by the gendered expectations of our parental roles. At the same time, I find a lot of wisdom in the common sense practices that have guided parents for many generations before mine.
I’m interested in the many ways we shape families and communities – gay families, straight families, cis families, trans families, single-parent families, multi-parent families, grand-parent families, aunt or uncle families, non-biological families, even child-less families, etc. The wife and I both come from tribes made up of multiple marriages, step, half, full siblings, numerous grandparents, and friends who are as tight as blood. We aim to raise Baby O with a sense of love from his big community and a recognition that his family is both tight and wide – and that he is lucky for the many number of people who love him.
While being wide in my scope of family, my world-view is sharp and opinionated nonetheless. I’m pro science, pro healthcare, and pro education. No anti-vacciners here.
I’m a feminist, a professional, a reader, a movie lover, an urbanite, a planner, a home style junkie, and a cat lover. I’m a millennial who wants a different conversation from having it all but still wants to roughly have it all on my own terms.
So that’s the niche I am exploring here – I hope you will join me.