It was easy when he was little. I could say whatever I wanted about him and it was just me, telling cute, funny stories about my cute, funny kid. Now when I want to talk about him I start to wonder if I'm invading his privacy. He's ten years old now. Those cute, funny stories that used to be mine to tell as I pleased are now becoming his stories. More and more often when I want to talk about him I ask myself "Would he want you to share this?" and more and more often the answer is no.
There's other stuff too. Sometimes I want to vent or work through a particularly difficult episode but I worry about what people might think. For example, last night Joseph had a really big, bad melt-down and I would like to talk about it and get ideas and support but something is holding me back. I worry that people will read it and think that I'm a bad parent. That I did something that caused that behavior or that I didn't do something that could have prevented it.
Even worse, I'm worried that people will read it and think something bad about Joseph. Maybe people will read it and think he's a bad kid or that he's a spoiled brat or that he's somehow less awesome that he actually is. I can't let that happen. Joseph is a great kid. The people who know him know that. I can't let people who don't know him think badly of him.
I've had this blog for five years and before that I had another that I started when Joseph was just a tiny baby. I've spent most of his life documenting every milestone, achievement, setback and one-liner. It's hard to accept that I have to stop that now. The best parenting tool I have at my disposal is my intuition and right now it's telling me to ease up, to let Joseph struggle and thrive and grow and succeed without me blogging every little thing.
That doesn't mean I'll never talk about him again! He's a hilarious little boy and his quips and quirks alone could fill a blog. For example: The other night I made soup. (For all the progress Joseph has made with food issues soup remains one of his, oh, let's just say less than favorite foods.) My parents dropped Joseph off after taking him to his horse back riding lesson and he was in a great mood when he walked in the door. He chattered happily as he took off his shoes (and shirt), washed his hands and sat down at the table. He picked up a spoon and was just about to dig into his dinner when he realized what I had set in front of him. The dreaded soup. He stared down at the bowl for a moment and then put his head up and looked me dead in the eye.
"Mommy" he said, his voice a mixture of anger and disappointment. "I believe I've already made my feelings on soup very clear to you."
And then Jesse and I laughed and laughed and laughed because it might have been a teeny bit rude and sassy but it was also mostly funny.