Monday, June 10, 2013

blogging, motherhood, and perfectionism

so today i was sitting on a stone bench under a tree right outside the nursery school, a few minutes ago i said to my 21-month-old daughter: "mama is going for a while and she'll be back soon, bye", she looked at me but apparently she didn't TRULY hear what i said, because a few minutes later, a couple of pages into my book i could hear hear crying asking for mama.

i don't usually recognize my daughter's voice, this is her 4th day into this new adventure and i've been staying with her almost all the time during the first 3 days. so i guess i've heard many OTHER toddlers' cries which enabled me today, eventually, to recognize my baby's. as i sat there enjoying my book, i felt guilty, should i go back inside so soon or should i stay a bit longer or maybe as long as it takes, maybe i'll just wait for somebody to call me (literally yell my name from the window or use mobile phones) saying: "please come back inside!"

after shaking away these thoughts i jumped back into the bliss of my book. it has been years since i was able to carry a book in my bag and actually read it instead of counting it as some kind of interior-accessory for my smart outfit !! then i felt guilty again, because i wasn't reflecting on the moment, i wasn't constantly thinking about my daughter with her big move and my feelings towards that and my struggles and fears as a mother leaving my daughter for the first time in the hands of strangers.... i just sat there enjoying, yes ENJOYING my book. by the way, the book is "How To Be A Woman" by Caitlin Moran. i looked to an outside observer as if i was a carefree -obviously married- lady reading a book, while inside a zillion thoughts -per minute was the rate of my brain cells function.

then came the eternal question i always wonder about: "so if i decided to write about this, would i write in English or in Arabic?" so it was easier just to say to myself: "there's nothing new i can say here, every single one of the female bloggers whose blogs i recently started to read and admire, every single one of them is a mother of two (like myself) or more children and has -surely- written about this on her blog at some point". this was enough reason for me to continue chewing and gulping up the pages of my book carefree-ly then later enjoying the progress we've made, and by we i mean my daughter and i: TWO hours of no-mama time spent by my daughter at the nursery school.

it was time for me to pick her up, greet her with enough passion to write about (if i ever changed my mind) as she ignored me with embarrassing enough disinterest that i'll avoid in my writing or decide to use it as more reason for me to again give up on the idea of writing about this. my son also came down from his classroom to play in the common room they call the "House Play". i buckled my daughter up in her car seat and my son was generous enough to offer his car seat to his two-and-a-half-year-old friend who came with her mother back with us (car seats are optional in this country, actually a "luxury" so my son sat seatbeltless squeezed in between the two girls' car seats).

driving with three children in the back seat is surely not a time to think or reflect, so there were a few sentences i exchanged with my friend about how the day went because it's her daughter's 3rd day and both girls did a great job today. when i had thought that the idea of writing about my day was over, i accidentally stumbled on this blog post by Lisa Jo Baker and i went: "HERE... YOU SEE? I WAS RIGHT" besides, it's my first time visiting this blog, so when i'll add it to my reading list i'll also include it in my "bloggers who write for and about their daughters' major life events" list...

but deep inside, the REAL reason for me to "run away" from writing was that i haven't written a blog post here in three weeks and i was afraid that this (and a bunch of other ideas that crossed my mind during the past 3 weeks) is not good enough... the longer i leave writing the more scared i get and the more my perfectionist side gets to dictate the rules.

so i discovered a fact that for me, blogging and perfectionism can't befriend one another, i can't expect every single blog to be a perfect one for it to deserve to see the light, besides, blogging is messy, it's public, it makes you feel vulnerable (if you're honest in what you write) and exposed (depending on how deep or personal you go)... i have to admit that it's tempting to add more real photos to my blog, i was brave enough to do this twice, but on many occasions when i took pictures of my kids i thought of how good this or that shot would be on my blog with a post about so and so... yet, i'm still scared thus i don't use real names and this gives me an imaginary sense of safety.

"blogging perfectly" is an oxymoron, because each one of these wonderful lady writers who have perfectly written, carefully colored and creatively designed blogs talk about motherhood, motherhood is messy, it's perfectly imperfect, so blogging about motherhood can not and should not be perfect and with the grace of writing an imperfect blog post i tricked myself into writing about my daughter's 4th day of nursery school ;)

well done munchkin... well done mama

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