This Woman's Work - Kate Bush (mp3)
Where Do the Children Go? - Hooters (with Patty Smyth) (mp3)
My job and I had been talking about having a blog together for a couple of years now, ever since a consultant suggested it might make us a better place. We discussed the idea together, but our parents thought we were too young and weren't quite sure enough how to raise a blog in the kind of nurturing and confident way that blogs need to grow up and be big blogs.
A few years later, as the economy sank into the tank and budgets got tighter than the sphincter of a BP vice president walking through the Ninth Ward, the idea of birthing a blog -- no cost! lots of fun stats to track! -- suddenly appealed more to the parents. In tough economic times, everyone loves a new baby. Especially one that doesn't cost much to feed. "If it can live off your two boobs," they told me, "then it's a great idea!"
So working hard with an in-house fertilization expert, I implanted my egg in a WordPress womb and began a summer-long gestation period. As the time passed, and as more teachers agreed to help raise this blog in a nurturing and supportive environment, my hopes grew. I began to envision this blog actually growing up, maybe even going to college and getting a degree.
The blog I've birthed with my job is under greater pressure. Its grandparents expect this little newborn to improve search engine results, to attract more students to the school, to increase our school's imprint on the world. They half expect the blog to grow up and become President. Except I'm not quite sure yet how interested these grandparents are in spoiling this infant. I'm pretty sure they're the kind of grandparents who are far more interested in receiving than in giving. As a protective and exhausted single dad, that makes me very nervous.
And I love my new baby. I'm an optimistic parent. I can see all these potential avenues to the future, and many of those possibilities are quite exciting. If it falls shy, its failure will be the sins of its father. Youth, or ignorance, or a failure to put this mewling thing in the right places at the right times.
Babies are about the promise of tomorrow. They're about investing energy, losing sleep, and lots and lots of breastfeeding. My nipples are sore as hell, and I worry if my baby can make it in this cold cruel world, but my heart is swollen with a strange and invigorating pride, and I feel like we can find a better place in the world together.
Ain't that what parenthood is all about?