Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Whose story?

When I started this commute, armed with my shiny new MacAirbok, I thought it would finally be my chance to really turn this blog into a regular report on our life. Instead, I find I probably post even less often than I did before. So I've been thinking a little bit about the why of it.
One reason is that armed with my wireless aircard, I discovered lots of other fun things to do while commuting (for instance, catching up on all the international Project Runway series on Another reason is that I get a ridiculous amount of listserv email and even with the long commute, can't keep up. Another big reason is Facebook. It's so much easier to "Facebook" (when did it become a verb?) No need to compose long, well-thought out posts; just dash off a silly sentence or two and move on to see what one's friends are doing and accept and resend silly virtual gifts. It's quick, it's painless, it's public in a way that my little-read blog is not.

But having discovered Facebook has also brought into focus, once again, my own issues with setting boundaries and privacy. As most of you who know me IRL are well-aware, my personal privacy settings are virtually nonexistent. I love to share the most mundane details of my life. The problem is that I now share my life with JR and his superdad. Their personal privacy settings are far higher than mine. So, on Facebook, I had to alter my settings to suit superdad. For one, he is very, very skittish about pictures of JR being up on the internet. One of the appeals of FB for me was the fact that it was a forum for sharing photos of JR. Not anymore. If there are photos of him up there, they were not put up by me and they were put up before I started telling people "please don't post photos of my son." This is not easy for me because I think my son is beautiful and I like looking at his photos and want everyone else to see them.

There are also implications for this blog. I started this blog to share cute stories about JR. This week, though, I came face to face with the realization that they are not just my stories. They are JR's stories, and he is now old enough to have an opinion. And boy, does he have one. We had one of those little incidents recently which make for a great little anecdote. I had planned to blog about it. I did start sharing it with friends and family - until the other night, when I went to tell the story to JR's grandmother, in front of JR, and he went into total meltdown. In the midst of the tears, and my apologies, he burst out "But you tell too much!" He's right, of course. So I'm not going to tell the anecdote here.

I'm not ready to give up blogging. I just have to figure out how to reframe this blog to be a way to post about me and my issues as a parent, without broaching the privacy walls set up by JR and his superdad. I suspect I will probably mess up more than once (some anecdotes are just begging to be shared). But I would love to know how others negotiate the boundary between public and private in this internet world. Especially people like me, whose own sense of boundary is, shall we say, challenged?

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