Friday, January 6, 2017

Lean On Me

You know that village that they say it takes to raise a child, find a job, and generally get along in the world? I have been cultivating that village for years, with layers upon layers of babysitting options, with fellow parents who can help me pick up my kids, with current and former co-workers with whom I exchange job leads and workplace tips. The village is a truly powerful thing.

What I have begun to realize recently is that my village, while perhaps no larger than it was before, is actually much deeper. For, as I navigate new worlds and new responsibilities and new hours, the "village elders" who are helping me make it all work are actually village youngers--my kids.

Now, were you to ask my progeny about me, they might say that I'm not around enough, not awake enough, not on top of things enough. But while I am working or sleeping or careening through life, they are helping each other with homework and lunches. While I am just trying to keep up some days, they are getting themselves ahead. While I am trying to manage myself and them, they are looking out for me in ways for which I never even thought to ask.

It takes a village--there is no question. But, these days, that village is an ever-changing place, with all sorts of villagers whose daily contributions make our village run. I used to have to lean on people I'd invited into the village myself. Now, it turns out that I'm leaning on the young villagers who have lived there all along. 

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