I haven’t blogged in far too long. For some of that time I’ve convinced myself I’ve been to busy. But I dare say I’ve been no busier than when I was blogging every day. Truth be told I got worried about what people think of me.
Now…I’m not going to pretend this is the first time I have ever worried what people thought about me. Hell, it’d be an incredible day where I didn’t worry about that about 50 per cent of the time. But, for the first time ever, I started worrying what my kids thought of me. And I don’t mean their little angelic faces of the present time day…I mean their slightly judgemental, far too many hormones coursing through their bodies, teenage faces. How would I have felt if I’d read about my mother’s struggles with teething and weaning when I was thirteen?
A friend of mine posted a fantastic blog post (which I now cannot find) on this subject and it really got me thinking. Because, ladies and gentlemen, mums and dads, we are the first generation of people whose grandchildren will be able to Google us. (Or whatever they will call it.) They will be able you find every post, every status, the Tweets, the timelines, the blogs, the YouTube channels. They will see how our world looked through the Instagram filter and they will judge us.
Now, while I sit here I think that I would love to read a blog my mum wrote at my age about her life. I’d love to see my Nannie’s selfies when she was out dancing with her friends. I’d love to see how my Grandad would have updated his profile when “SHE SAID YES!!!!!” Or which emoticons my dad might have used when he announced my birth. But I’m thirty four years old. I have a grasp of the real world. I know something of the struggles my family went through when I was young. I can empathise and would read with wonder, not embarrassment at the moments they shared.
But thirteen year old me? She may not have enjoyed it so much. She had an awful lot going on in her greasy haired head. And she had people at school who called her names for being fat, or clever, or not clever. For not having the “right” sweatshirts, or trainers. For not being “cool” or for just being me and not them. What if they’d seen my mum’s blog, dad’s Instagram or Nannie’s Twitter? Because although their families back stories would also be online, does that even matter if you are the one who’s face doesn’t fit?
And I’m totally torn in this. Because my only mission in the world is to raise healthy, happy kids who have the resilience and tools they need to bounce back when they are unhappy or unhealthy. I spend every day just trying not to fuck them up. So, with that in mind, should I stop doing what I love and what makes me feel like a proper actual person? Should I delete the accounts and post nothing more in the hope that my online footprint fades away into non existence?
I’ve puzzled and puzzled till my puzzler was sore on this issue and I’m really not any further forward. I want to take the rather simplistic “happy mum = happy kids” stance I don’t think life is ever that straight forward. However, I do find that writing about my life helps me gain some perspective. And that perspective helps me not lose my shit. So in that sense “blogging mum = less confused kids”. But what about the future Mini and Micro Silvers? Will the Tiny Tyrant resent my dodgy nicknames and moans about the night feeds? Will the Minecraft Master one day challenge me on why I told people about his odd YouTube preferences?
Or, and let’s hope it’s this one, will they be too busy enjoying their own lives to be at all concerned by my sleep deprived ramblings of yesteryear? And when they do decide to look me up, when they’re older and perhaps a little more empathic, will they possibly be a tiny bit comforted to read that they were my universe? Will they be up with their own teething child one day reading about how I got through those times?
I suppose only time will tell. And what and when I write will be carefully considered with them in mind from here on. Because (and forgive me teenage offspring if this embarrasses you one day) my boys are literally the most important thing in my world. And no amount of time, distance or teenage disenchantment will change that. And I hope they know that long before they Google me.