I have gathered all the documentation needed to apply for the kindergarten lottery. The last item, her immunization record, arrived in the mail. This three-page document outlines all the results of all of her doctor visits from birth to now. It shows what has been injected into her body and what was discovered by looking at the blood taken from her body. She, as many children of her generation, have inextricably deep digital footprints. I have added quite a few through this blog, facebook posts, and tweets, but this document strikes me as different from those. While they are as permanent as anything in this digital world, they are ephemeral in nature. A few people read the things I write, maybe comment or think about it for a moment, and then let the words pass back into the ether. I paint sketches that over time may combine to be something, but this medical document is serious just by itself.
There are times I wonder about what affect my blogging will have on my children. Surely it will not be anything like the consequences of publishing a best-seller about child rearing or performing psychological experiments on them and publishing the results, yet they may read these posts some day. Others they know may read them, too. Perhaps this will cause some small ripples in their lives. The medical records may have a deeper impact. What they can and can’t do, what insurance they might get, things I can’t even imagine now could all find their roots in this ever-growing document.