When I started this blog five months ago, I had very few expectations. I expected a handful of friends to read (I was right) and my mom to read (I was wrong). I thought some people would think it was funny, and others would take offense to some of my words. I hoped my stories would resonate with mothers, and I would make a few new friends along the way. Most of all, I was looking for a creative outlet. Like many stay at home moms, I’m told that I’m doing important work, but feel marginalized by people with “real jobs.” I waffle between pride when a reader has an emotional response to a post, and embarrassment that I am a mommy blogger. It’s clear that I’m still getting comfortable in my new skin, and I’m figuring things out as I go.
This past week Funny Is Family began experiencing some growing pains. Up until this month, most of my readers were people who know me in real life. People who know my family. I have used a nickname for my husband (The Doctor), and used my kids’ first initials when speaking of them, and since everyone reading knew the real names of the kids, this worked fine.
Recently, traffic patterns suggest the majority of readers are now people that don’t know us. I am afraid the initials are getting confusing, and the kids need names. A desire to be real and honest makes me want to share more about my children, including their names, but privacy concerns prevent me from doing so. Working with an editor from a site that will be running one of my posts this week, my concerns were confirmed: It’s hard to follow a story with first initials as names. So, under pressure of a deadline, I renamed my kids in about an hour’s time.
Presenting: Graham and Lily
Graham is a five year old Star Wars, Lego, and Harry Potter junkie. He loves to read, make projects from trash, and fight with his sister. Graham is smart like his dad, and funny like his mom (even though his humor right now is mostly fart and butt jokes.)
Lily is three, and on most days can be found making up songs, snuggling with her mom, bossing around anyone who will listen, or chatting with relatives on the phone. Despite the fact that she once made a boy cry at preschool, she really is quite sweet.
The stories in this blog are mine, but they also belong to my family. The Doctor proofreads all of my posts, so if there is content he isn’t comfortable with, it gets edited before being published. If I mention anyone else in my posts I usually get their permission first. My kids don’t get the same opportunity to opt in or out of my blog. Right now, they don’t care that I tell people the silly things they do, but I’m sure in a few years they will. The pseudonyms I use for my kids are an attempt to shield them from future Google searches that may embarrass them.
If I’m still blogging when the kids are older, and they choose not to be mentioned, I will respect that. Until that time, I will write about them with truth, with love, with humor, and with the knowledge that the internet is a vast, unforgetting place.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to change G and L to Graham and Lily in almost a half of a year’s worth of posts.