Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Ah, Blogging Consternation

I am frequently at odds with myself over "blogging." I started for me, for my girls (at the time one girl) so that I could keep track of stuff since I'm not a baby book keeper-upper. In fact, I have one for Stella and none for any child thereafter. Instead, I have a blog.

But then when you blog and people find out about it you have an "audience." Even though my audience is friends and family and the like I start to feel this blogging pressure. Which is good, in a way. As it makes me more accountable to update, which will benefit myself and my original intendees as a result. But then, oh, but then. But then I'm like, "Oh, can I write THAT on my blog? Should I mention THIS? Should SUCH AND SUCH be public knowledge?" None of THAT, THIS or SUCH AND SUCH is very interesting, but just stuff that I think about.

Of course, I do think about lots of things political or religious in nature which effect my everyday parenting style and decisions, so perhaps they are interesting? But I don't want to stir a pot on my family record-keeping blog.

All that is to say that life with three children is aptly hectic and enjoyable. It keeps me honest. It makes me focused. It requires stamina and endurance, spousal communication. It contributes to my sanctification (one of those things I think about). It makes me think about why people don't want children, what the opposite of children is and why that is appealing to some. (Which then seems to become unappealing as those child-free by choice reach a certain age...) What would my life be like sans children? What would I do with my free time? Admittedly, it would free up a lot of resources, but what would be the long-term benefit?

Before Jamie and I got married we did marriage prep courses through the Catholic church. We learned about finances, communication, NFP (gasp!), and other things that play out in the daily life of a couple joined together in the sacrament of marriage. One couple shared their relief that they chose life and children as opposed to material prosperity and ease. They had five children and lost one daughter when she was only fifteen years old. The words of the wife resound with me when my life gets overwhelming, "I'm glad we chose to have our children. I'm glad that we are able to look back at photos of her and recall happy memories with her. There's a photo of her sitting on the ugly couch that we had for so many years because we couldn't afford a new, clean, pretty couch. I'm glad we chose to have her and all her siblings and keep that ugly couch instead of limiting the amount of children so that we could have material gain. Our lives are better because of all our children and I never think about that couch unless I see it in old photos."

That sums up a lot of how I feel about my ugly couch and my lovely children.

And that leads me to one of THOSE THINGS that I think about quite frequently: our particular society's place in the world and in time and our preoccupation with materialism. It can be a hot button topic. Not that I tend to avoid such things in real life, of course if you know me you know that already. My spouse likes to remind me: The perfect can be the enemy of the good. This is true in ambition, home decor, body image and family planning, etc. What stops us from embracing life? What stops you?

“As the family goes, so goes the nation and so goes the whole world in which we live.”
John Paul II

Edited to add:
“The great danger for family life, in the midst of any society whose idols are pleasure, comfort and independence, lies in the fact that people close their hearts and become selfish.”
Also John Paul II


raya said...

I'm glad you wrote this. Exactly what I needed this morning & you can at least know that your "audience" is being encouraged by your words. Hug those girls for me xo -Raya

Stacy Barrett said...

Wow. I had to re-read the Pope John Paul quotes to let them sink in. Wow. I would like to read more of his writing - what do you recommend to start me off?

I am glad we are friends and I am glad you blog (and talk) about such "hot button" things. Keeps us thinking.

Love you.

jmgb said...

keep writing~

Sacagawea Extreme said...

I love reading about you guys. I love reading what you are going through both struggles and joys. It helps us feel connected to the Hansons, which we want to be.

Kurt passed the bar. Couple of interviews are pending.