Monday, November 18, 2013
Have Baby, Will Blog
Before giving birth I expressed curiosity over whether a baby would inspire me to write. Well, here I am, writing... so I suppose we have an answer. But do I have any words worth writing, that is the real question.
Firstly I must acknowledge how incredible it is that I am here at all. All the parents and people-who-know-parents around us have been in awe of my relaxed and organised state. It is thanks to a combination of having the most involved, loving, generous and just plain available partner in the known universe, and of being mother to the most relaxed baby I have ever heard of. Reactions to the latter condition have ranged from highest praise, suggesting that our relaxed attitudes and superior parenting are the cause of our child's calm demeanour (hardly likely), to bitter jealousy. Never fear jealous parents of difficult babies - he's only 5 1/2 weeks old, there's plenty of time and means yet for him to break mummy's heart.
So, here I am - has the little one given me anything to say? Well... yes... and no. About motherhood itself there is both too much and too little to say. Motherhood is: exhausting, overwhelming, WONDEROUS... and boring as hell. You don't want to know every detail of his development and my hours, and sometimes, neither do I. But things are being written, so I must feel there is something to record.
Mostly what I find is that I am interested... a general feeling of interest in things, in understanding this job, and equally in the world outside of it... but my thoughts are scattered. I'm pleased that things are being written - this blog, my diary, 'correspondence' (as I now refer to emails... it lends them a pleasing poetic weight don't you feel?), and even an attempt at a novel - but it is very difficult to complete a coherent idea, to string the links of thoughts together for analysis or even clarity. My diary, for example, like my conversation, has some substance, but little structure. Ideas are repeated, missed and poorly articulated. A study of my pre and post-baby diary would reveal a sense of the time distortion and interrupted nature of parenthood by its format alone. Once there was a narrative, and barely an edit to my words; now they come in bursts and dribbles and back-tracking, meandering muses, with sentences crossed-out, re-included then crossed-out again as I attempt to gather the threads of meaning together.
I am reminded of those cruel but fascinating experiments recording the resultant webs of spiders given drugs. If words are my web, then my brain is on some serious narcotics.
On that thought, I'll end this piece and submit it for public scrutiny, noting that those on drugs are often fascinating to themselves, but tedious to any sane audience.