I can’t do it.
I can’t give up the Pond. I can’t give up the magic and the seven years of stories, tales and confessions I put into it.
But at the same time, I can’t go back to the way things were. I can’t post photos of Danielle in her wedding dress or talk about Ben and the dogs. I can’t post pictures of me looking like a moron with Danielle and Bryan. (See above). My biggest fear is this crazy stalker would find my family and hurt them. Plus, it was odd when I’d go somewhere and people I didn’t know would ask me about my stories, the dogs or something they’d read about on my blog.
Monday, when I was tutoring, one of the little boys asked me when I was going to publish his story. He still thinks I’m a magazine editor and is convinced that J.K. Rowling is going to fly down and tell him how brilliant he is and win a million dollars. Yesterday, I was wondering around thinking, and realized the Pond is a perfect place. Not only can I share my own children’s stories and use it as the public site to promote my books since I’m still under contract with Turquoise Morning Press and Inkspell, but I can put up writing activities and fun things my kids say, and print their own work. So many kids hate writing because teachers make it a chore and obligation to pass ridiculous tests. They lose the joy of stories and of reading. This little boy, in the time we’ve been together, has not only started writing more than three sentences on his own, but is having fun with it. A little girl that told me on day one liked math and wanted to be a veterinarian and only needed to know enough to write on her patients’ charts is now writing stories about her dog that take over the entire whiteboard so she’s writing around the edges and between sentences in different colors.
That’s what the Pond can be. The Pond can be a place of joy, a place where writing is fun and stories are magical and don’t have seven layers of meaning and context. The Pond can be a place where you write because it’s fun and not because you have another test, another hoop to jump through.
This place, however, will be the place I tell my stories, post pictures of my family and talk about all the things I’d never tell a person on the street corner. It is the place I can be truly free, without having to worry if I sound all right and don’t have a booger on my shirt. That used to be the Pond. But like all children learn eventually, I learned the hard way that you can’t invite everyone home to your room with you. One child will eventually be cruel, and you’ll never want to bring anyone home again.
In this tree fort, there’s a password. Luckily, ya’ll all know it.
Stay tuned, Invisible Subjects! The Hill Country Princess will be back with a story next week– she’ll be moving all weekend!