Have Bloggers Changed The World?

blogging change
My daughter hasn’t been to Disneyland since she was a toddler. She says she is tired of hearing all of her friends talk about it and wants to know if I can take her so that she can participate in these discussions.

She also wants to know if I can take her to Hawaii, Europe and Israel because a bunch of her friends have been to all of these places too and she thinks it would not just be nice to talk about, but educational.

I smile at her and tell her I am working on it.

She smiles back and tells me she is going to be 11 in a few weeks and is curious about when I’ll move it from working on it to making it happen for real.

Let’s Talk About Your Uncle & The Supreme Court

I smile again and tell her I want to talk about Uncle Jimmy.

She says she doesn’t know why having a gay uncle is a big deal because her friend has two moms.

I tell her that I was older when I learned Uncle Jimmy was gay and ask her if she remembers we had another gay uncle.

She says no and we have a short conversation about them both. I tell her about how they were part of two different generations and explain how their lives were different from others because they had to hide parts and pieces of their lives.

We talk about how it must be hard to hide some things that are important to you and spend a few minutes going over what kind of secrets are ok and what aren’t.

It is a more sophisticated conversation than what I am sharing here, but there are boundaries in blogging and you don’t always need to see behind the curtain to understand the importance or value of certain things.

I tell her that sometimes you find your passion and that sometimes it finds you. The manner of discovery doesn’t always matter because either way changes your life and you find yourself walking paths you never expected to wander down.

“Daddy, how many times has the world changed in your lifetime?”

I tell her I am not entirely sure and that I have to think about it for a moment or two.

Have Bloggers Changed The World?

Long past midnight before the 98 ounces of coffee have lost their impact I sit outside and think about the question.

Certain events stand out because they impacted the entire world and some stand out because they are things that changed my world.

Do I focus on the events that had the biggest personal impact upon me? Do I talk about how blogging changed my life and relate how it also changed the life of my kids?

Is it more important to talk about change on a global scale because of the larger impact or is it more significant to talk about the impact of decisions upon US citizens?

That doesn’t negate the importance of people around the world, it just narrows the circle a bit so we can improve our focus.

The Scotch in my cup swirls in response to my playing with the glass but I don’t see any answers in the ripples inside.

“What is the point of this Jack? What are you trying to figure out?”

No one answers the question, which is a good thing because I am certain I didn’t say it out loud.

The Future Is Unwritten

Back inside the house my daughter is upstairs asleep in her bedroom, the smile on her face makes me smile too.

As I wander down the hall my son pops out of his room to ask a question.

“It must be nice to be a teenager and to have nothing but time to do nothing.”

He rolls his eyes at me, “you had your time to be a teen dad. I am hungry, can I make myself a sandwich.”

I shrug my shoulders at him and he laughs, “yeah, I know it is not really a question.”

“Don’t make a habit of eating now.”

He smiles at me and promises he won’t. I am not particularly worried, I remember being ravenous like him and how my metabolism didn’t care if I consumed a billion calories.

He is clearly growing, the pants he is wearing aren’t particularly old and they are already short. Skinny boy that he is, it just makes him look taller.

*****

I sit down at the table and we spend a few minutes talking about movies and he asks me if there is an update on moving.

“Nothing substantial yet, the future is unwritten.”

He tells me he’d feel better if I could give him more details and I laugh because I would too.

If I had my way I’d have made the major changes quite some time ago but things haven’t worked out that way so for now we wait and see.

“There is a real benefit in learning how to roll with whatever comes along. I don’t think I could have done it as well as you have, not when I was your age.”

What & Who You’ll Become

He asks a few questions about what life was like for me when I was his age and I do my best to answer them.

“How tall were you and how much did you weigh?”

When we exchange measurements he is surprised to find out I was almost twenty pounds heavier. I pull out an old album and show him a picture and he tells me that he can’t see the difference.

I tell him I was broader and I worked out.

“You’ll be at least as tall as me, if not taller. Your built a bit like your Uncle Jimmy and your great-great grandfather.”

He nods and smiles finishes his meal and heads off to bed.

The dog and I move into the living room.

“Life isn’t what I expected it would be like. Some of it has been a lot harder than I ever could have imagined. But damn, who would have thought that at this age I would be able to say I am becoming more like I thought I would be than ever before.”

The dog wags his tail at me and I thank him for listening.

“Guess I might as well catch some zzz too, tomorrow could be a big day.”

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8 Comments

  1. Larry June 29, 2015 at 7:02 pm

    I don’t know that a particular bloger has changed the world but blogging has. It has an influence.
    I like the exchange between you and your daughter.

    • Jack Steiner June 30, 2015 at 9:24 am

      I bet there are at least a few bloggers who have changed the world, but it is probably less important to figure out who they are and more to recognize the opportunity it provides.

      I love talking with the kids. We learn from each other.

  2. cathy June 29, 2015 at 2:37 pm

    Hi Jack.
    It is encouraging to see the running conversation you have with your children. It may not always be easy to do, but knowing they talk to you about smaller, everyday things could be crucial someday to a more serious conversation.

    Disneyland may be a big thing to your daughter, but I will always associate it as the last big family trip we had before my parents divorced, so it holds no magic for me. That, and I got lost and spent what seemed hours trying to find my family. (It was my fault for being enthralled with the sidewalk artists when they weren’t and kept walking when I stopped.)

    And yes, I think blogging makes a difference. Every word we write or read, changes us in some way. I choose to think of it as a good thing, although at this moment in my life I am not always sure I am right about that.

    Thanks, I enjoyed this post.

    • Jack Steiner June 29, 2015 at 8:44 pm

      Hi Cathy,

      I can understand how Disneyland might have awkward feelings associated with it. That sort of experience has to make an impression on you.

      I agree with you about the impact of our words on others. You never know what is going to impact another.

  3. alisa/icescreammama June 29, 2015 at 11:33 am

    big moments and small moments happen every day that really matter, like those conversations with your children. it’s not all rainbows but it is a gift. 🙂

    • Jack Steiner June 29, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      It’s a real gift to have these conversations and moments with the kids. I’m grateful for it and hope she always feel comfortable speaking with me about anything and everything.

  4. Janine Huldie June 29, 2015 at 11:15 am

    We seriously just never know day-to-day, when the next thing will happen, but then again that is half the battle, suspense and surprise of life in general! 😉

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