Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Tangled Thought

Words on paper don't necessarily convey feelings.
Feelings expressed in words don't always tell the story.
Stories told to no one often get read the most.

If a blog enters the world wide web and only one person reads it, does it stick around for others?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Here you go Dana.

Writing isn't new to me, I've been updating a Caring Bridge website for the last 21 months, but the thought of writing for me is. I keep reading that the newspaper business is a dieing industry and that just about everyone writes a blog, maintains a Facebook account, or "tweets" these days. What this tells me is that I'm not going to make a living out of composing my thoughts into sellable text so I better not spend a lot of time at the keyboard. The truth is that I can't really do that anyway. If you knew what my life is like you would understand why.

For the acronym challenged, which by the way does not include my wife, I am a SAHD; better known as a Stay At Home Dad. Two girls, ages almost 6 and almost 4, call me Daddy and to a world I left behind three years ago, I'm known as Mr. Jim. I had a decent career, working in four different zoos across America by teaching kids about animals, until 2006 when I decided that having a day off with my wife and kids was more important. Being home on the weekends meant that I could watch my girls play soccer, take them to ballet and tap lessons, and just relax with my wife if we were ever able to do that. The rest of the week my wife went to work and I learned how the world is not built for people like me. Strange my life may be to others, but this is the SAHD part of my life and I love doing what I do. It does however come with a few issues.

  • When you go out to a grocery store you expect to buy food. When I go out to a grocery store, I expect for old ladies to tell me where the items are on the shelves because I obviously have no idea what I'm doing and am only there to "help my wife out".

  • When you go to the park you expect to have some fun. When I go to the park, I expect for people to tell me how nice it is that I'm "giving my wife a break".

  • When you took your infant to the bathroom, you expected a changing table. When I took my kids to the bathroom, I was lucky if the handicapped stall was available to give me room on the floor, since there was no table, so I could lay down the changing mat. (Gross, yes, but effective.)

The world is not built for a stay at home dad. It's getting better for sure and more men are doing this even if they never wanted to, but I still face undue bias, ridicule, and praise for doing the most basic of human functions; taking care of my kids. I am certainly not the best dad out there but like I tell my kids, I'm the best dad you have. As one of my good friends is fond of saying, if I can keep my girls off the stripper pole then I'll have been a success. There's an unfortunate thought that I can't get out of my head. Sorry. I have loftier goals for my girls than that.

So here I am, thinking about my life as it is now while sitting at the computer desk, and I still don't know what the heck I'm going to turn this blog into. I promised my wife that I'd try to find something but I warned her that I could wind up writing about family, friends, and other sensitive topics that she might rather keep between the two of us. With her continued support and encouragement, here is my first stab at making a writer out of myself. Hopefully I won't start writing about sensitive topics in the future that will make a stabber out of my wife.

I better hide the knives now.