Why Write

When I first began jotting down my thoughts about 12 years ago, I wrote for one person: me. I didn’t give much thought to what I wrote about. On the rare occasion I was proud of a post, I’d tell Kim and she’d read it and encourage me to continue writing.

It wasn’t until 2004 when I wrote about walking away from a job that I realized a few people were following what I wrote. When a woman emailed to say that post had encouraged her to quit her job I wondered what I had done.

That’s when I began to consider why I continued to write. Those same thoughts have crept into my mind on a number of occasions.

Lately I’ve thought about how my writing may affect my children. I often write about the highs and lows of being a father, but I know they may not appreciate making those details public as they get older. I’ve begun to discuss that with them and will respect their decision even if it means I keep some experiences private. I suspect I often write about my children to avoid writing about my struggles in balancing a career with fatherhood.

Years later, I still don’t have a good answer when people ask why I write. I guess it doesn’t really matter.

I don’t want to be the type of father whose children rely on my writings in order to find out what I’m about because I wasn’t around.  I want them to know why there’s no sport quite like baseball or why Zelda: Ocarina of Time is better than most games on the market today.

When my parents found notes written by my grandmother after her death, it made me wish that I had gotten to know the part of her that came through in the letters.

I don’t want my children or grandchildren to say the same about me.

2 thoughts on “Why Write

  1. Writing about family does have its challenges. I was in trouble about 8 months ago with my son and daughter-in-law for writing a post about a Primary lesson I taught using my granddaughter who was born with a cleft palate as an example in the lesson. It was a very well received post, and frankly, one of the best things I’ve written.

    They said that they didn’t want the cleft palate to “define” her. Months later I still feel bad about upsetting them, because that was certainly not my intention. I’m not even sure what “defining” someone means, but I know that my granddaughter is as spunky as her granny, and she’s not going to let ANYTHING get her down.

    The entire reason for writing the post was to explain that we all have adversity in our lives, and that we should look at all people with love. It boggles my brain that something so innocent in my mind caused such problems. I certainly understand that they are trying to protect her — as that is all I want to do too.

    When I first started my blog, I put in my bio something to the effect that what I wrote would probably end up getting me in trouble — and it has a few times. I’ve decided that it’s okay if I get into trouble occasionally. It keeps me honest. In the end, I’m compelled to write. It’s something I’ve wanted to do all my life. It’s part of me — and my kids will all live through it and be stronger for it. 🙂


  2. Thank you for the comment, Laurie. I agree that it’s probably a good thing to ruffle a few feathers now and then. When I get an email or comments taking me to task it reminds me that someone is taking the time to read my writing and has given some thought to how they feel about it, even if they disagree. I haven’t run into too many issues with my own family but I’ve managed to upset a few managers who wanted to use my blog to have me fired.


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