I first started this blog because I felt like I was in danger of disappearing into the quagmire of motherhood.
I felt as though my creativity was waning and I was becoming a mum-bot with nothing going on for except her household and her kid… which became a plural and turned into kids, and the quagmire got deeper.
There was no great plan as some bloggers have, but on a whim after some friend’s suggested it one day I just sat down and started to write.
That was two not quite two years ago.
I did not become an overnight internet sensation. Far from it… But there have been a few little things that have come out of this journey of self discovery, blatant self-indulgence, self-promotion and humour.
One of the biggest things I’ve discovered is this girl can write. I can connect with people through words, sometimes better in writing than in person where I can be awkward or say too much.
I’ve always been passionate about food, but I’m also intensely passionate about humans.
Not for spectacle’s sake, but for humans being human.
Each and every single person has a unique, interesting and magnificent story. Some more than others, but everyone is complex and amazing.
I have this friend. She’s eight. I’ve known and loved her from the time her mum told me she was pregnant, and I’ve seen her grow from a cute, button-nosed baby into cheeky button-nosed almost tween.
She’s awesome. Cheeky, confident, sometimes too much of both but she’s a good kid.
A loving kid.
She’s a right tomboy. Always has been. Never thought much of it, because she’s just her.
My little friend.
Bubble Bum I call her. She used to laugh but now she hates it.
Won’t stop me.
I was quaffing chilli margaritas with her Mum over a pizza the other night when her Mum told me that her daughter wants to be a boy.
The school principal suggested two years ago that they start looking into gender dysphoria because he believes this is not just a case of a tomboy.
We kind of knew that, but as I said never thought much of it.
Other people often do think much of it and my little friend’s Mum has been the butt of great judgment. So, after those chilli margaritas slid down so easily we decided we’d write their story and get it out there.
Awareness is everything, and these guys were keen to say loud and proud –
We are who we are. Accept your children and love your children and support each other as a community.
In a nut shell.
I pitched it around in a few different forms and it was picked up by a large publication.
It was written, edited, rewritten. The photographer traveled to my friend’s place and took their photos.
Here’s where it gets interesting.
The father was not consulted on the matter. My friend is the sole carer and sole provider so she was my only contact. The ins and outs of that are not relevant here, but what is relevant is when he did find out about it he did not want the story to be written.
He made some strong arguments, and he made those arguments strongly… including threatening legal action against myself and the publication.
The editor thought the story would be stronger with real names and images, and the father absolutely refused.
The story was pretty well canned.
Ultimately, I see both parents’ point of view. This isn’t about who’s wrong or who’s right, they both have a good point.
One intelligent human being wishes to create an awareness of a situation that should not be seen as shameful and bring a greater understanding to the community, and the other intelligent human being wants to protect his eight year old daughter from judgement from people who may not be as open-minded or accepting as one would hope.
In chess it would be a stale mate. As for a writing debut, it was killed….
We decided the editor may as well just look at it just to see how it had ended up as a piece, and it currently looks as though it will go ahead with pseudonyms and no images of the little one. This meets the father’s wishes although Mother and Child would still like to go public.
Personally, I’ve been so excited, and then so disappointed by this thing that I’ve learned that until I see something in print it’s not a sure thing.
I’m telling you this because my Facebook community requested the story about the story. I’m not telling you this for you to pick a side, because ultimately it’s worked out precisely the way I wanted.
I wished for anonymity for my little friend all along. She didn’t want anonymity for herself, but she is young to make such a call.
Someone recently asked me on my Facebook page why all the wacky shit that could happen always happens to me and I don’t have an answer for that, but I will say this for myself –
My life is anything but beige.