I've kind of purposely not written about either of my children's most recent birthdays.
Sure, if you go over to Instagram you may see photos of the festivities and whatnot, but when it's come time for me to sit down and write some gushing soliloquy to my children on the day each of them exited my body and became people of their own ... I falter.
Maybe I'm too emotionally drained from the breakage of the family I fought so hard for, for them. Maybe it's the stress of single parenthood, working parenthood, school-age parenthood. Maybe it's the lack of support from where I thought I could count on it and the quick bursts from the places I didn't that leave me spinning, trying to keep up and say thank you and stay gracious without just giving huge pieces of myself away in the process.
I don't know what it is.
But I'm okay with it.
I find myself, in my regular life, craving more face to face contact. I have stories to tell -- so many stories -- but I want to tell them, my hands in motion not over a keyboard, but in the air around my body. This is partly because I find it incredibly easier to open my mouth and let the words pour out than I do to commit fingertips to keyboard buttons and stumble about. There is no misinterpretation of tone or cadence in speech; the humor will keep the timing I intend and the ebb and flow of the emotional state of my monologue will be clear and precise and direct.
Because lately, I feel betrayed by my words.
Which is part of why I stopped writing them at all.
Because I knew, if I left them unchecked, they'd release all the things I've been fighting so hard to hold back, all of the stories only told in person in hushed corners or late-night whispers, because that's the irony of a life lived online -- what once was your safe haven and place of open and honest release (because you couldn't trust the people you were around all the time) has flipped on it's head and your measured words all come at a consequence in your social media spaces and it's only in person you can get away with expunging your deeps and darks because the Library of Congress isn't archiving your shallow breaths or your tipsy giggles.
Unless your phone is secretly recording everything anyway. In that case, we're all just screwed six ways to Sunday.
But I guess this is what I know, to a point. Despite the prying eyes and the backstabbing gossipers and the enemies yet to be discovered alongside the long standing known nemeses, this space and this sound of clickety-clickety-click and this white, blank screen with a tiny vertical line dancing across it in stilted, staccato movements ... like it or not, this is my home.
This is the house that I built, before husbands and babies and quite so many cats, over a decade of years and a million lifetimes ago.
And I don't have a clever quip to keep that metaphor going at present. I'm here. That's about all I've got.