I’m leaving tonight to spend a few days with one of my closest friends because she’s dealing with some shit. It’s not my place to define “the shit” but trust me when I say, her plate is overloaded with sucky circumstances and crappy conditions. (Is that vague enough for you?)
There is a lot of logistical planning that has to take place when Mom leaves the house for four days. A LOT. Now, KJ is a great Dad who can easily handle the three kids on his own, but I’m leaving for four weekdays and he does have a job. Thank God we also have Amanda (our kids love “Amanda time” so much, they’ll hardly notice I’m gone) but she also has a lot going on.
So our Village has been called to action.
We talk a lot about our Village in my family – grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins – all local and all ready to help. Anytime. Anywhere. In ANY WAY. Yes, I KNOW how lucky I am.
But then the Village spreads out in concentric circles (wait, that’s a math term, isn’t it? Did I use it correctly?).
I have this circle of close, local friends who offer up babysitting help – and kidneys, should one of us ever need one – on a regular basis. When the shit hits the fan for anyone of us, they’ve got the carpools, the play dates and the Meal Train set up before you can even think, “I need help.”
My oldest friends in the world – from middle school, elementary school and even preschool – are out there. They’re all over the place, living their lives, succeeding at jobs, raising their kids. We don’t see each other nearly often enough, but I know they are there, should I need them.
I have a huge extended family and I could call any of those aunt or uncles or cousins for help – or for a Margarita – at any time.
The Village circles go on and on.
Last week, I was sick. I spent many, many hours on the floor of my bathroom, fighting the stomach bug that the Nibbit had brought home two days earlier. I could write about it in detail, but I don’t think that’s necessary. You’ve probably had it this past month as well. You know it sucks.
Yet the whole time I was sick, in addition to nauseous and miserable and achy, I also felt so lucky. Because I never once had to worry about my kids. I made a few logistical calls when I first woke up and knew I was going to be down for the count and my Village pretty much picked it up from there.
Tonight I fly out West and tomorrow, my Village kicks it into high gear. Pick-ups and play dates and car pools and dinners. And for every person helping, I’ve had many others asking, What I can do? Can we have the kids over for pizza? Did you give KJ and Amanda my number? How are you feeling about your trip?
There’s no real point to this post. It’s just that as I’m packing my bag to go see my dear friend, I’m feeling blessed. I know that if I get the flu, or plan a trip, I’m surrounded by this Village to help. I also know that if I ever need more, the circles go on and on, spreading outward. A ripple effect of support.
I’m very thankful today that because my Village is so strong, I can go play Villager for someone else who I love.