Every week my friend and blogging partner-in-crime, Julie, and I get together to challenge each other, prop each other up and talk all things writing (not dorky, over-intellectualized stuff but the nitty gritty of what makes writing fun for us, what our goals are, how we’re gonna get there and how nerve wracking it sometimes is to put this stuff out there for you all to read.) Anyway, I digress…a couple of weeks ago Julie gave us a writing prompt to fill in with a story.
“What gives you the right?” was the prompt. Julie went on to explain that she got the idea from another writing prompt site and thought it could easily be applied to us. Here on our blogs, she and I have both taken our kiddos’ lives and turned them out there for all of you to see, inspect and sometimes, possibly, judge. So what gives us the right to do that?
So I’ll tell you what gives me the right…but first, I’m going to have to turn that prompt just a little and say it’s not a right…it’s my privilege to write down these stories for the kids. You see, I suck at pretty much every other way of documenting their lives. Those cute little “My first year” calendars that we all get as baby shower gifts sit, probably still in their wrappers, covered with dust on a high shelf in the back of a closet some where. I have tubs and tubs of pictures stashed here there and everywhere. Stan has tried, to no avail, to help me mend my wicked non-scrap-booking ways by buying me pretty…oh, what are they called???….OH YEAH, photo albums. He has tried to guilt me into putting pictures in the photo albums by saying things like “You know, most people have these books where all of the pictures are contained. You can just flip to the page and ‘voila’ there is the picture.” Yeah, I suck at all of that.
Writing these stories down seems to be the only way I’ll have to preserve my kiddos’ history.
I don’t have much of a history myself. All of my baby pictures are stored on those so very convenient things called “slides.” You know what I’m talking about…you need a slide projector and screen to flip through them. The slides have never been transferred over to film so there the sit in boxes, stashed away in the back of my parents’ attic. Stories of my youth aren’t really ever told or re-told so there is not much there for me either…those stories are long gone.
I don’t want my kids to lose their histories so I am taking this “right” I have (because I’m the parent and I say so) and turning it into a privilege so my kids’ stories are preserved and someday, maybe, their kids will want to read stories of their parents’ long ago lives. So until that time…this is not only my right but my privilege as well ~ for the love of my children…