This is a blog about life and death.
Most blogs are about life. Eating lunch, going to the park, visiting friends, traveling around the world… all those things are part of life. And many of the things that you’ll find on the internet fall into the same category: things you do in life. But then you have kids.
Kids force you to go nose-to-nose with your own death.
Becoming a parent is one of the most dramatic life-changing events one can imagine. Kids mess up your established priority system and become a strange extension of your personal being. Having a child and becoming a responsible parent forces you to come to terms with what “being human” really means.
Before kids you tend to live your life from day to day. Sure, you worry about your future and you try to do things to become a better person, but everything you do tends to affect… well… you. You may have a spouse or other family members or friends that it also affects, but ultimately it’s you that stands to gain the most or benefit the most from your actions.
It’s a nice existence.
And then you have this kid. Those kids are not responsible and can’t depend on themselves and suddenly you’re in a situation where the things you do affect people other than yourself as much, if not more, than they affect you.
Having kids forces you to look at your child and think about the future. You want your kids to lead happy and productive lives. As you envision your child’s future your mind moves the video forward as you imagine your child getting older, falling in love, getting a job, starting a family… and somewhere in all those scenes you realize that you’re probably not going to see everything wonderful in your child’s life.
Because, quite simply, you’re not going to live that long.
Before you have kids you understandably see your life as a pretty tragic event, but unless your Julius Caesar it’s not going to mean a whole lot in the grand scheme of things. But now… now you have someone who depends upon you for everything and is, in many cases, actually part of you. Your death would mean something to your child as well.
At some point you realize that, as a parent, your job is not to make sure your kids are constantly happy or entertained or even all that comfortable most of the time. Your job is to make sure your kids know how to take care of themselves and ultimately live without your guidance.
Your job, as a parent, is to prepare your children to be responsible, capable humans who can take care of themselves. Your job is to guide them and help them as much as possible because, one day, you won’t be there to offer any more advice.
And that’s why I’ve decided to start writing again. I once wrote that I’m a “failed blogger” and a daddy. That’s still true. I had a writing business and it failed and it hurt. But I’ve always been a daddy and I always will be.
But that’s also where blogging comes in: writing is a way to preserve some of my advice and thoughts for my children, or whomever else happens to read these words… even after I’m gone. I’ve always loved writing more than speaking and I still find it a relatively relaxing way to spend an evening… though relaxing evenings are rare when you have two kids. Yes, I could just write these words in a journal and let them sit, but that has always struck me as a bit selfish and even wasteful.
So I’m writing again. I’ve decided to use this little spot in the virtual world as an archive of all the things I’ve written over the years as well as a place to add new stuff. Some pieces will be funny, some might make you think, some will be informative and some may even be helpful. I once fell into Google’s trap of building niche sites dedicated to each of my interests. I’ve found that to be an artificial way of writing and archiving things because, quite simply, people don’t work that way. The guy who likes to write about his kids is the same guy who likes to write 400 words of puns who is the same guy who likes to share his home improvement projects who is the same guy who builds apps on the side. That’s me.
Make no mistake: this is a personal blog. I am writing this with my children in mind as my main audience, so it could be considered a daddy blog as well. My daughter can’t really read yet and my son doesn’t really surf the internet on his own, so none of the things here will be read by them for years. Heck, they may not even read most of it while I’m still alive.
Maybe one day when I’m long gone my kids will be riding around in their self-driving flying cars and sipping a kale coffee when they’ll think of me. They’ll pull up this little blog on their eyeball screens and read a post or two. Maybe they’ll laugh or maybe they’ll learn something new.
Or maybe they’ll just realize that they had a father who loved them very, very much.