September 4, 2009

A Blog History

September is the anniversary of The Bingham Diaries. (I know, I can barely believe it myself.) The last two years have been interesting, to say the least.

I've been contemplating how much I've grown as a writer, and how much I've grown in other ways too. I'm proud of my little corner of the internet, and I'm happy to see it grow and change. It's like my fifth child, only slightly less demanding.

And seeing how I'm feeling especially sentimental these days, what with my firstborn starting kindergarten next week and all, I've decided that this month will be a look back. I'm going to go through, and see what I've learned, how I've grown, and think about what I hope to become.

I'm going to share with you my favorite moments, and the ones that still make my cringe.

First things first though, I think I shall start with the name.

I quite literally started this blog one afternoon after a doctor's appointment. I had four small children at home. Thaddeus was three, Blayne was two, Daniel was one, and Taylor was four months old. My life was in survival mode. I hadn't slept through the night in four years, because I had those midnight feedings to attend to. Add to that the fact that Taylor was born prematurely, and at four months, was only about as developed as a 6 week/two month old baby.

NONE of my children were potty trained. I had four bums to keep clean, four mouths to feed, four people to dress. September of 2007, I had HAD IT.

In tears, I called my friend Jill. She went to work, keeping me on one phone line, and dialing doctor's offices on another. An hour later, she had made an appointment for me for THAT DAY. She instructed me to get off the floor... to get in the shower... to get dressed... She had me call my mom and ask her to come babysit. She called my husband and told him he needed to come home. She assured me that everything was going to be fine, that I needed to breathe, and I needed to take care of MYSELF.

I drove to the appointment. My wet hair was pulled under an old ASU cap. I was wearing pajama pants and my only clean T-shirt. I hoped that my big sunglasses hid the redness of my face, and the pain in my eyes.

I managed to sign in and seated myself in the farthest corner of the waiting room. I began counting the tiles on the floor, the panels on the ceiling, whatever I could find to keep myself from breaking down in front of all those people.

When they called my name, I followed the nurse back. She weighed me, and I cried. She took my blood pressure, and I cried. She asked what I was here for, and I cried. She put both hands on my shoulders and looked at me. She told me everything was going to be alright, that she would get the doctor right now and that he'd see me immediately.

When the doctor walked into the room, I broke down even further. I couldn't breathe, I couldn't speak. He gave me a small pill, dimmed the lights, had me lay down, and called the nurse back in to hold my hand.

After what seemed like hours, I stopped crying. The doctor came back in and we discussed my history. He came up with a game plan that I was to follow. I needed to get help. He didn't want me to be alone in the house. He asked me what I liked to do.... what I liked to do....

I couldn't come up with anything. I offered up a few thoughts. Scrapbooking? No. It's still all about the kids. What do I like to do? Just me. I remembered that I used to write a lot. That I had journals FULL of my thoughts and dreams. He said, that's it. You need to write, you should start a blog or something.

So I did.

I came home and googled "blogs."

I asked a friend who had a blog what service she used.

I made a gmail account, and signed up with blogger that night.

I tried a million different blog names, all the clever ones taken.

Then I thought about what my mom always called us. "The Bingham Babes"

It was her pet name for my family. Every day, she'd call and ask, "So, how are my Bingham babes doing today?"

I typed it in.


Then I needed names for us, because I didn't want to use our real names.

I became the MomBabe.

Eventually, I moved to my own domain, but by then, I was known as "MomBabe" even though I had given up using pseudo-names for my children. (It was too confusing for me.)

So that's why I remain "MomBabe" and DadGuy remains "DadGuy." They were the only two names that stuck...

But my real name is Caroline...