It’s often been said that it takes a village to raise a child. (Note: this reference is NOT a thinly veiled political endorsement of Hillary.) No doubt. My boys are lucky to have four amazing grandparents and a handful of awesome aunts, uncles and cool cousins. Thanks to regular road trips, FaceTime, and old-fashioned snail-mail correspondence, our families play a huge role in our kids’ lives.
But so do the good peeps we’ve collected close-by—those influential “Village People” (do it: picture the band in all its costumed glory) who deserve some shout-outs. So here goes:
To the friends who go way back, the ones who do things like grab your first kid when you go into labor with your second, who let themselves into your house to take your tools or drop off food, who provide your kids the comforts—and inappropriate “uncle” influence—of having family (even if not by blood) nearby, THANK YOU. You mean the world to us.
To the best-friend bachelors—the one who shows up early to birthday parties to help ice Cookie Monster cupcakes, the other who stops by to play catch with the boys because their dad is staining the deck and their mom smashed one in the head with an errant toss the previous week, the both who keep showing up to hang out at your place, even when it’s super inconvenient, because they’re cool like that, THANK YOU. You rock!
To the super-great Mom friend, who picks up your kid, with hers, in a pinch, because your husband is away and you are stuck on a trafficky road due to poor planning—and then makes your guy feel like he is on a magical, impromptu playdate, not abandoned at preschool by his hot-mess of a mom, THANK YOU. Cheers!
To the Dad-friend/Coach, who not only has instilled confidence in your boy on the ball field but also seems to be at every school event you can’t attend, where he makes sure your kid feels supported and then texts first-rate shots of the little dude, with his son, sprinting round the circle at Jog-A-Thon, or yucking it up on some class field trip, THANK YOU. High five!
To the rockstar friends—literally—and other-types-of-artist friends who demonstrate to your children that, even though their parents have careers that involve going into an office, typing at a computer and sitting in many meetings, you can also make a life doing whatever brings you and others great joy. Whatever makes you YOU. You can do this full time. Or you can do it AFTER you have gone into an office, typed at a computer and held a bunch of meetings, even though you might be exhausted. Because that’s what life’s all about: being you—and sharing it with the world. Bravo!
To the crew of like-minded parents, with whom you might consider founding a commune, who jump in to bandage whatever knee is bloody, wipe whatever nose is dripping and assuage whatever battle is brewing, who text on a snow day to see how you’ll divvy up the working/play time, THANK YOU. You help reinforce the beauty of trusting and leaning and giving. Big hugs!