Mama Madison: Pick a story

A bonanza of kid-issue blog fodder

There are times when figuring out what to write about doesn't come easily. Weeks with no obvious holiday tie-in, no top-of-mind funny kid story, or no crisis in the parenting world are always a bit of a challenge.

And then you have a week like last week. The blog-post-idea heavens opened up and didn't just sprinkle or drip. It was a complete and total downpour.

As of last Tuesday I was sure this week's piece would be a tribute to Maurice Sendak. I didn't grow up in a house with a ton of children's picture books. My dad was a visual artist and a bit of an illustration snob. Lots of kids' fare drove him nuts. But not Sendak's. My siblings and I went to bed every night with Little Bear and Where The Wild Things Are images dancing through our heads. And I'm pretty sure my life long aversion to cooking can still be attributed to seeing Mickey swim around the "morning cake" batter of In the Night Kitchen.

But then came Wednesday and President Obama's long-awaited affirmation that same-sex couples should be able to get married . How could I not use my 500 or so words for the week to attempt to wax eloquent on how his public support must feel to two mom and two dad households. My life changed forever the day I got married. For me it didn't feel like the continuation of living together or a small step forward; everything was immediately different. There was something about the ceremony, coupled with the legality, that emotionally hinged my now husband and I together. So I wanted to write about how amazing it is to have a president who supports a gay couple's right to feel the same way.

And then came Thursday and the outrageously sensational Time magazine cover. No better way to charge up Mother's Day celebrations nationwide than to throw down the parenting gauntlet with a loaded question like "Are You Mom Enough?" accompanied by a picture of an extremely attractive young mother breastfeeding a child clearly old enough to drink from a cup. The ideas were spinning around in my head. Should I write a post on extended breastfeeding perhaps? I did it with two out of three. Or maybe a few words on attachment parenting (what the article is actually about)? Or perhaps just save my comments for this coming December when that mom, or that kid, is inevitably named Time Magazine Person of the Year for making the newsweekly so relevant again?

But all this got pushed aside on Friday when the Mitt Romney the bully story broke. I've always struggled to find the best way to deal with bullying in the blog. Do I share a personal story? Write about the movie? Talk to an expert? And now we find out the likely Republican Party presidential nominee was an absolute jerk beyond measure during high school. And the fact that he refers to the forcible shearing of a fellow classmate, which he claims not to remember, as "hijinks and pranks"? This was no crank call, Mr. Romney; it sounded more like an assault. Do I think people can change from who they were in high school? Of course. But even so, this was an incredibly disturbing thing to hear about a man who'd like to be the leader of the free world.

So I guess what I've ended up with for this week is a bit of a hodgepodge; a sprinkling of half-posts instead of anything in-depth. And for this I apologize.

But I guess sprinkles are what you end up with when its pouring ideas.

I could probably use a bit of a dry spell.

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