Parent: n. the material or source from which something is derivedLong time, no see. It's been a rare week away. If you were expecting a post-Thanksgiving debriefing, you will not find it here. It was (mostly) a good one. Lots of eating and fun times. Also some incidents that I won't go into presently. Let's just say it was a bit of a rollercoaster. Another time, perhaps.
Instead, I've been wanting to write something up about an article I read...in all places, a particular parenting magazine I will not name. (One that pretends to be useful and gender neutral but is actually filled with insipid crafts and advertisements for moms.)
It was a lovely, humorous piece by a father writing a will for his children despite having nothing much to give materially. I can relate. Not to mention that gold pocket watches or antique vases aren't especially invaluable even if they are valuable. Don't get me wrong, wills can be useful. Kelly and I have talked multiple times (though never really gotten around) to figure out who would parent our children in the event we both die in a terrible explosion. For the column's author, it was being hit by a bus, if I remember correctly.
The author's point--to be quick about it--was that in the event of our demise we should have left something behind for our children besides some cash. In fact, I agree with him here, if you're going to die it's not the cash you really wish you'd left. It's the wisdom. It's the advice about how to handle bullies and being a teenager and how to properly bunt and read sheet music.
My emphasis here now...when I set out to become a dad-blogger I had assumed it was, at least a little bit, for someone. Other dads? Family? Myself? The blogosphere is full of people talking--especially parents--mostly to each other.
We like to talk about parenting to other parents. We share stories of tantrums and strange food preferences for each other. Right? But I have a friend who frequently comments that my blog is amusing especially with, say, a 10 year old Cole in mind. The internet is forever. He will eventually read.
The tongue-in-cheek reply I usually give is that the aim is two-part then. One to show how much I loved watching them grow up. Two to show how much of a pain in the ass they were. Two birds with one stone.
In light of...ok maybe not dying...how about just the inevitable future...I've taken to heart lately the idea that Cole and Leda might one day enjoy seeing what I had to say about them growing up. If they can remove the iPod from their ears or chip from their brain or whatever the technology will be when they're old enough to get sentimental about their dad wanting to chronicle their lives.
I wish there were more blogs out there written by parents for their children to see one day. There's something to that, I think. You may not see it here. Then again, you may. It could be a simple how-to for Leda to learn to roast coffee or Cole to tie a tie.
Because parenting is about being the source material for your children to draw from.