Blog or Not?

Okay lurkers, de-cloak and tell me if I should call it quits with this.

In the past few months I have been really struggling with whether or not it makes sense for me and my family to continue the blog.

I need to write, there’s no mistake about that.

And I need to be truthful when I do it.

But I am starting to worry about how this all looks to outsiders.

I see the comments people leave on popular blogs.  (Not that mine is, or ever will be, popular.)

I know how critical the world is and how easily things are taken out of context, mercilessly scrutinized, and then judged unfairly.

I am hard on myself and I don’t always write about my recoveries, you know?

I don’t elaborate on the hugs and the triumphs of my motherhood as much I do on the tantrums and my parenting failures.

I can only imagine what the world thinks of me.

My mom is concerned that those who don’t know me will think the worst, and maybe even use my own writing to somehow harm me or my family.

And maybe I worry about that too.  I’m candid, and it’s usually when I am disappointed in myself.

When I’m at the school, I wonder every minute if the other parents or the teacher or the aides are reading the blog and thinking I’m the worst mom ever.

This morning, a little girl in the line next to ours was playing with a small glass stone.  She brought it to school to show her classmates, but when the bell rang she was tossing it up into the air over and over again and only catching it about half the time.

I told her to put it away.  She asked why and I explained that it could hurt someone if it hit them on the head when it fell.  She was not in the mood to have me tell her what to do.  She continued to throw it behind my back, assuming I had no peripheral vision.

I probably should have said something more to her, but I was suddenly possessed by paranoia because of the blog.  What if all of the adults on the playground read my posts and long ago decided I suck at parenthood?  Maybe none of them would appreciate my attempt at maintaining order in the chaos of the morning playground line-up.  Maybe they would even ask me to leave or keep my mouth shut.  That’s what the blog does to me sometimes.

On other occasions it makes me brave.  I meet moms who seem completely overwhelmed by parenting a special needs child and I feel lucky to have a voice and the courage and skill to use it.  I get what my son needs, wherever we go.  I get what I need.

But I don’t know from moment to moment which of those feelings outweighs the other.  Am I too paranoid?  Or am I confident in how I manage my family and my life?

My mom and I had lunch today and discussed a few related topics.  I have considered ending the blog.  My mom suggested I leave it up and think carefully about whether or not I want to keep doing it.  I asked her if she thought I shouldn’t instead take it down and consider whether or not I want to keep doing it.  I don’t recall that either of us could answer that question.

So I guess that’s what I’m asking all of you.

Should I keep writing the blog?

Should I keep telling you about the dark moments in my parenting?

Should I worry that some jerk with an agenda will one day try to make trouble for me and my family by twisting something I’ve said or judging me out of this greater context?

What do you think?

I really, really want to know.

P.S.  Happy Wednesday.

P.P.S.  I finally finished my book and passed it on to a friend.  Now I’m reading a children’s book by the same author.  It’s probably just as well that it’s meant for kids, because my brain is usually pudding by the time I have a few minutes for leisure reading.

I got both of these titles for under a dollar at the thrift store.  Happy happy smile smile.

P.P.P.S  Did I tell you that I sent my kid to school with a giant safety pin holding his pants together yesterday?  😳  He really wanted to wear them, but they were too big and all of his other pants were in the washer.  If only I had remembered to tell the aide that I’d done it, but I forgot.  I don’t know why I think the blog is such a damning source of my parenting failures.  Seriously?  Can you imagine sending an autistic eight-year-old to school with a giant pin in his waistband?  I didn’t even have to write anything to look bad for that one.  Sigh


4:00 a.m.

I woke up at 4:00 a.m. a few days ago and thought I was going to die.

I have this issue with my left arm.   When I sleep in the wrong position, it goes numb.

I’ve already talked to my doctor about it and there are things that I can do to avoid pinching the nerve – lose some weight, wear a better bra during the day, use a different pillow at night, etc.

I did the easy ones and I’m working on the others.

The problem is, when I wake from this at 4 o’clock, I always think I’m having a heart attack.

Eventually, I do convince my head that I’m not actually dying, but my heart isn’t always as sure.

In those wee quiet hours, when my family is asleep and the house is dark, I always imagine the worst.

I hate it.  I hate that my a.m. brain goes to the darkest corners of my life to borrow bad fuel for my panic attack fire.

I think of the deaths of my friend and my father.  I remember my failures as a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, even as a student.

I remember errors I made in my high school and college classes, stupid things I did to thwart my own education, and stuff I didn’t figure out until it was way too humiliatingly late.

I was late to the game a lot.  Late.  To the game.  A lot.

And at 4:00 a.m., I cry because of it.

Occasionally, my husband stirs and distracts me for a brief moment with some night terror of his own.  I guess that’s the hour when bad dreams hit our house.

Last night, I recalled (and was humiliated anew) by an incident from my 12th grade drama class.

It’s too ridiculous to explain in detail.  The short version is that the teacher asked me to summarize a play she had assigned a few days before.

She wanted me to start the discussion in class that day.

Unfortunately, I never read the play, so needless to say, I didn’t do very well with the summary.

To mask my stuidity, I even foolishly dared to tell of a scene from the book to enliven my description, only the scene I recalled was from the movie and wasn’t even in the book.

Epic fail.

There was such disappointment in my drama teacher’s face.  I think she really liked me until that moment.

Twenty-five years have passed, and it still embarrasses me to think of it.

At 4:00 a.m., it makes me panic.

And in college – oh brother – what an idiot I was.

I took Astronomy at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday.  Bad move.  Not my favorite subject.  Not my favorite time of the day.  Lethal combo.

I fell asleep almost every time I went.

My friends took the class with me and helped me to stay awake now and then, but mostly I missed everything.

When it came time to take the final, I was totally stumped.

Rather than kill myself trying to come up with answers I knew weren’t in my head, I wrote a note to the teacher on my exam paper.

I apologized for failing the test, mentioned that I was a theater major and said I hoped he would come to a play sometime.

I strolled to the front of the class, got behind a few other students and added my unfinished test to the pile.

Since there were other kids behind me, I assumed my test would sink below some others so I could skulk out of the room without incident.


The instructor read my note before I’d gotten ten feet from him.  Then he said my name.  I turned to see a look of totally exasperated disappointment.  He shook his head at me.

Humiliation.  Red hot cheeks.  Couldn’t get away fast enough.  What was I thinking?!

At 4:00 a.m., that teacher’s face appears right in front of mine and makes me panic.  PANIC.

It sucks.

I hate for people to know how dumb I am.

And by “people,” I mean me.

I hate to know how dumb I am.

I hate to know it at 4:00 a.m. because it makes me feel like I’m having a heart attack.


Don’t know what else to say.

Happy Thursday.

P.S.  Oh, and by the way, if you absolutely MUST know, the play was Anna and the King of Siam.

P.P.S. Today, I look like my mom.  (Ignore the red eyes.)

And my dad.

And myself too.