The Stories I Can’t Tell (Day 166)

(photo credit: Slackline 2 by Ghislain Mary on

I wrote a different post today. Then I threw it out. Well, actually, I deleted it.

It took place in a coffee shop. It was my take on a story my daughter told me when we were waiting for our coffees this morning.

And therein lies the problem. Her story. But, in other posts, I have told stories from and about her. Yet, this time, I felt a twinge when I reread what I’d written.

I struggle with how much to reveal about my personal life in my blog. Clearly, most of what I write is about what happens to me in my life, which means it is personal, and it includes the people in my life and often the stories that they tell me.

So why did I decide not to tell my daughter’s story today?

I realized that what I had to say about her story revealed a great deal about her,  things she may not care to have somebody else reveal, especially her mother. It wasn’t anything embarrassing or shocking but it was something that belongs to her. Not to me.

There’s a fine line between what I believe is fair game in my blog writing and what is not. In some cases, members of my family feel that I have stepped over the line. We aren’t, it appears, in full agreement about where that line should be placed. Sometimes, I feel like I’m walking a tightrope. Other times it’s more of a slack line.

This blog is not intended to be a tell-all, where I share secrets that are not mine to share. It is meant to be a place to tell stories about my life that resonate with my readers, stories about life as it is lived.

Fences, it is said, make good neighbors.

I like to think of myself a little bit like that Mr. Wilson character on that TV show from years ago called Home Improvement. The main character, played by Tim Allen, would stand by his fence and talk to his neighbor on the other side of the fence. We never saw the neighbor but we knew his voice. He would tell stories that made Tim think about his own life and how he was dealing with the different things that were happening to him and around him.

I may not be there yet, but I’m striving to tell stories that have the same sort of folksy wisdom that Mr. Wilson had when he spoke to Tim. Maybe a little edgier than Mr. Wilson. Mr. Wilson had no edge.

But he had a fence. And I have a line.




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