Category Archives: Writing? Really.

November 8 – Oh Crap

NaBloPoMo November 2013

Only seven days in and I fail at NaBloPoMo, and I can’t believe none of you noticed. *Hurumph.*

Of course I’m totally blaming you as I’m totally fault-free.

On the other hand, I totally remembered to schedule our family pictures for the church’s snoop book.

Our last picture was in May 2008 and I was slightly smaller than the average bungalow, just two months shy of my due date.

Oh, and before I sign off, anyone else notice that I started each sentence with the letter “O”?

 

IT IS THE BEST OF TIMES

A couple months ago, I set a goal for myself. It should have been a simple and easily attainable goal, and in the weeks leading up to that deadline, I was convinced it was going to go as planned.

After ZGirl’s first birthday, I was going to give up blogging.

I have been carrying around delusions of grandeur for years, hoping to take this community by the nipples. You might assume I’m pretty full of myself to even think it, much less profess it here, but I’m not an egomaniac. I just never realized how much pull there was in the comments and emails of strangers who are willing to take a minute or two out of their own busy schedules to let me know I’m not alone.

When you grow up use to being a wall-flower, you take whatever attention you can get, you know?

There are some days I can’t believe I would ever think of leaving this behind. It’s the days that you’ve offered a shoulder when I’ve found myself shaken to my very core, or to side with me when I think Mr. DD is being a putz, and of course to share in the greatest joy I’ve ever known. And once in a great while, I get an email – out of the blue – by someone who thanks me for being me. That’s a beautiful and humbling experience right there.

But then there seem to be more days when it just doesn’t seem worth it to even log-in to WordPress. Those days I feel as if I’m forcing the anger or the funny. I ask myself is it because I’m not as bitter? Oh, but I am. Am I angry? Hell, yes! Did I lose my funny? Did I ever have it to lose??

Like most bloggers have confessed, I do go about my day thinking, “Oh! That’d make a great post!” so I sit down at my little desk, fire up my lap-top, my thoughts jumbled and still forming like a little cauldron but then Life outside the internet takes place:

 “I’m out of clean work shirts!”

“XBoy has a Time-Sucking Function to go to at 7:00. You want to stay here with ZGirl or take him?”

“Mom, will you play backgammon with me?”

“Mumum – mumum . . .  Mumumumum! MUMUMUM!!!”

While these things get to be annoying in their repetitive nature, I also find some peace in them, because it’s all I really wanted when I started blogging in the first place. Isn’t that what we all wanted when we started blogging (whether writing or just reading) (if you were/are an infertility blogger)? To get life back to “normal”, whatever that normal was?

I’m returning to the normalcy that I envisioned, but I just feel like there isn’t enough rage, bitterness, sorrow and sarcasm to satisfy whatever your needs still are. And quite frankly, I miss having one of my posts linked to when I wrote something that spoke to your heart, your head, or even your funny bone. In fact, I don’t think we link to each other as much as we did in the past (I say with three fingers pointed back at me). Maybe I’m out of touch, or maybe we become so overloaded that we’ve become passive, if not just plain indifferent.

After taking weeks to get this out (I know. It doesn’t seem like it, but I just can’t get it flow quite like I want), I’ve realized that I won’t stop blogging as I had planned. However, I’m giving myself permission to NOT think about posting; to stop reaching for the proverbial Blogging Brass Ring – an “in” to syndication, to publication. I’ll leave that up to those who find writing an unquenchable passion. For me? I just want to stay connected with friends who saw me through my worst and know that right now, this is the best I’ll be. I’ll no longer apologize if it’s not enough for some. It’s more than enough for me.

DO YOU HAVE A SECRET KNOCK?

If you use a feed reader (Bloglines, Google.Reader, etc.), here’s a tip I use to remember passwords to protected sites.

More than likely, you will have an option to rename a subscription. Say for example, you could change “Punch Drunk” to “Self-Absorbed Hack”. . . If you wanted to, that is.

I amend the names of subscriptions by adding the password: “Punch Drunk” becomes “Punch Drunk: pw lilliputian”.

Now I can’t share my list of reads in Reader, even though I can share individual posts, so I could inadvertently and carelessly share a password. However, I would never “share” a pwp blog or post. That would be stupid. Don’t be stupid.

Bloglines does allow you to share your list, so you’ll want to be careful there.

LOWER YOUR EXPECTATIONS

pittOne of the magazines in our reception/waiting area is Wired, which I would best describe as a Rolling Stones magazine for the techno junkies. Augusts’ publication has Brad Pitt on the cover…wearing a blue tooth ear piece and next to it in itty-bitty print it says something about how HE can barely pull that look off and you aren’t him(oh, so true, people). I couldn’t figure out how Pitt could tie into Wired so I went to the article inside (of course it was for the article ‘cause Pitt’s face is not the purty IMHO) titled: How to Behave: New Rules for Highly Evolved Humans.

The article is basically a bunch of tips for people like you and me that spend an abnormal amount of time blogging, tweeting, flickring, facebooking, etc. Within those tips are tinier little tips, like these:

  • Don’t follow more people than follow you.
  • No more than 20 tweets in 24 hours.
  • Don’t use a photo of your child as your profile picture.
  • Don’t type BRB. Just go and come back.

By the way, Brad Pitt, star of Inglorious Basterds, is providing separate and bad advice within the column, which is actually kind of funny.

Anyway, one of the topics of the article/column is “Meet Online Friends in the Real World (Beware: It Will Be Weird)” by Mathew Honan. And this is interesting shit, so don’t skip over this or blow me off just yet.

Nancy Baym, who studies online communications at the U. of Kansas talks about what can be an awkward shift from internet friendship to a real world one.

“With all his snappy posts and ripostes, you may have come to think of him as quick-witted. But what’s fast in message-board land can feel slower than dialup in a face-to-face exchange. ‘Sometimes good online socializers are shy in person,’ Baym says. ‘Their medium is the written word.’

This made a lot of sense to me especially later when I was talking to a gal I’ve become friends with at work. She’s outgoing and hysterical and she doesn’t come into my office nearly enough throughout the day to alleviate my boredom. Just today we were talking about boobs. She claims she has pancake boobs – you know what I’m talking about – which she was lamenting when I suggested that she go to her S.O.’s class reunion and wear something to show off her boobage to make HIM look good. She said, “It’s too much trouble shifting them around to make sure I don’t look ridiculous in case it gets cold,” and then she made this motion with her fingers as to how one nip might be pointed this way and the other that-a-way and added some sound effects for good measure.

…I guess you had to be there. I mentioned facebook to her to which she responded with a blank look on her face. “I don’t get it. I have a SIL that sits in front of the computer all day doing that shit. What the hell could she be getting out of it?”

Herein is my point. It appears that a majority of people who seem to have a more difficult time, how should I say this? Socializing, do quite a bit of blogging. I read dozens and dozens of blogs and at one time or another there has been some admitting to being shy. It’s why I veer away from meetings with other bloggers. Why even though I have a few phone numbers stored in my cell phone, I don’t call anyone. I don’t want you to realize how abysmally dull I truly am in real time. When I headed up north for the ConFab and met Molly, Alexa, and Jennifer, I felt like a fraud and an actor. While my blog is hardly spellbinding, it definitely paints a much flattering picture of me than meeting me in real life.

I think that’s probably true for 99% of those who blog religiously. We are terminally shy and looking for some kind of outlet. So to many like me, blogging is actually kind of like Bizarro World for us shy, under-worldly creatures. There’s probably a funny, thoughtful, smart, insightful person inside of me somewhere, but since she rarely makes an appearance on my blog, I’ll just warn you to lower your expectations if we were to ever meet in person. My little nook in an unused room suits my personality quite well.

AND THEN

I made tentative plans to go to BlogHer in Chicago this year. For those of you that have been living under a rock, it’s in one month exactly – July 23-25.

I booked the hotel; shopped for flights; forced myself onto a handful of other bloggers before finding one who took pity on me and agreed to allow me to shack up; and researched blogger card designs. Oh, yes, I was falling into the BlogHer line and getting pretty damn excited about it. It was to be my vacation, the first one in three long, arid years.

And then I lost my job to the body and soul snatching hospital, Faithless.

My husband said I should still go. We would make do, but out of guilt, I put any further plans on hold, hoping things would normalize.

And then my FIL got a wild-hair up his ass and made plans to visit his brothers in New England. My husband would have to be his chaperone/nurse maid. Guess what weekend they chose?

So I turned over my reserved hotel room where the convention was being held, to Aurelia. Apologized profusely to her for leaving her high and dry and sleeping solo. Fate was telling me, “DD? You and BlogHer weren’t meant to be this year.” Like the past three years, actually.

And then my FIL had surgery on his leg. His obesity and failure to follow the doctor’s instructions lead to complications, including a nasty viral infection. My husband, who also started making tentative plans for that weekend, doubted that he’d be making the trip. FIL insisted: yes, dammit, we are still going!

And then!…one of FIL’s brothers ended up with his own scheduling conflict. The weekend of the 25th was officially OFF the table. The announcement came this past weekend.

And THEN???

Oh, hell, I don’t know. Shit. You fill in the blank. I just don’t have the energy.

DINOSAUR EXTINCTION OR EVOLUTION?

I think a lot about how far Mr. DD, XBoy and myself have come over the years. I am so focused on ZGirl, the here and now, that thinking of the past makes me wonder, did I really think or say that? All I have to do is go to my archives for proof.

Here’s a post from 2006 when I took some time off from work to purge our storage of all baby items that we had held onto with the assumption we would have another baby. It’s important that you go read it and the comments with it.

05.20 clown

I did save those dinosaur pajamas. I couldn’t bear to part with them. My daughter is wearing them this very second, asleep in her crib. That’s her in an earlier picture on the left. A picture of XBoy is in the link.

I’m having a difficult time explaining how it makes me feel to see her in them. Yes, of course joy since it means that all those years we waited for it to be our turn once again, came; but I also feel a bit of heartache since I know that in just a couple of months she will have outgrown it as well and I’ll have to wash it and fold it for the last time. Sure I can save it for the ages it will take for me to maybe become someone’s grandmother, but will it survive another 20 years?

My meloncholy mood was significantly deepened when I read the comments.

Kath was still waiting to stay pregnant for the first time back then. Now? She’s had baby girl #2.

K&M’s blog is gone. She’s reinvented herself in a new pwp blog after the birth of her son.

Angela’s blog is gone, but she stops in occasionally and we cross paths on facebook.

Karen, after a couple months of silence has just started blogging again. I missed her terribly.

Leggy is now Clover, but she’ll always be Leggy to me. She’s had boy/girl twins since then.

Baggage has noticeably been absent here, but I also see her updates on facebook.

Kellie stops in still, and I am grateful for her continued presence.

Donielle…she had a blog, but it is also long gone. I haven’t heard from her in ages.

Julie. I feel my heart constrict a bit when I think of Julie (Sisyphus) because I miss her soooo much.

Erin has been a constant friend, but quieter now that she brought home her son from Ethiopia.

KarenPince also had a blog, which is gone now. She recently had a baby boy.

Trish. Former Nebraskan. She has a daughter who is terminally ill, but I don’t see updates from her anymore.

Cricket, who I never thought would become silent, has. She has an art blog and saw a recent update, but I haven’t heard from her since January.

Tuesday is still blogging. After her miscarriage of triplets, she had another baby boy.

Jess…I wish I could remember more about her other than she stopped blogging ages ago as well.

Josie and I non-stopped emailed each other for a while there. I even met her once, and it’s already been a couple of years ago. She finally brought home her son from Ethiopia as well just a short time ago.

Michelle is thankfully still out there. Her surprise pregnancy mirrored my own (non-surprise) with ZGirl.

Midori has gone through hell these past few years. No longer keeping a public blog but I do get to see pictures of her new life on Flickr and see updates on facebook.

Long time sista. My former best friend.

Kati stopped blogging some time ago after suffering several miscarriages during her SIF. I miss her sweet ways.

Rachel went through her pregnancy during her husband’s deployment, but she hasn’t posted in a year.

Menita, darling Menita. We also cross paths occasionally on facebook and I get a silly little zing when I see she’s checking in on me.

Catizhere. That’s all I need to say about lovely Cat. She is still here. Thank god.

Spanglish and I had a falling out, except I don’t know why.

Alli also stopped blogging about a year ago.

Jenny is now the infamous Bloggess and has left me in the dust.

Kellie from One Mother’s Journey deleted her blog years ago. I see someone else took the domain name.

Her Bad Mother also moved onward and upward.

Soralis is still blogging, but at a new site under a new name after she had her baby girl.

TB took a very long hiatus after the birth of her son over a year ago. She has posted since then, but not often enough IMO.

Nico went on to also give birth to a second son and a different blog.

Every one, not just my daughter, is growing, evolving. However, the difference between my daughter and these blogs and their owners is that she is growing up – eventually to grow away; these long lost bloggers…? Is the rate for extinct bloggers really that high, or do I need to only look in the mirror to find the answer?