Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Diaper Bag / Writer's Backpack

Before Jen and I and our little man moved to England, we worked pretty hard to narrow down our possessions. At the time, working as a teacher and also writing on my own and being a dad, I had quite a few bags.

Now, in the time of As Few Possessions as Possible, I have one.

The bag I have is a backpack, black with Swiss Army emblem on top (purchased at target a few years back for a cool $29.95 and holding up quite well still), and bright silver zippers crossing all over the thing, with hidden pockets just in case you want to practice the art of storing things in a new pocket each time out of the home.

Often, my bag holds assorted diapers (size 6), a variety of butt creams (currently, we've got a bit of Desitin left along with the actually-called Butt Paste), three extra pairs of toddler's socks, a Winnie the Pooh sweater and tiny jogging pants (just in case Tyler and I are out and about and he gets wet/food all over his clothes/has a bowel-explosion/other unforeseen circumstance).

Tonight, I did what I normally do on my writing afternoons or nights: I removed all above materials and into my bag went my big blue journal, a few pens, my tiny laptop computer, and my flash drive.

There it is--the transition from Daddy to Writer.

But then again, as I thought about it, it's really no transition at all. It's what we all do. No matter what we've chosen to do with our lives, we're always turning to different things, listening to different needs, and using our hearts to work towards a whole host of possibilities.

What makes me tick as a Daddy is what makes me tick as a Writer, and vice versa. I bring my daddyness into my writing, and my writing life into my daddyness. I have a heck of a lot to learn about both roles--but every time I make the switch from butt cream to laptop, I tell myself, You're learning, man--and isn't that what this whole thing is all about: learning how to love no matter what we do?

I'm about to pack up my Writer's Bag and head homeward, while it will once again become my Diaper Bag. But maybe, just maybe, it's always both.