That phrase “it takes a village to raise a child” has been going through my head a lot recently.
I love being a mum, it’s the most important role of my life and I hope to raise happy kids into happy adults, but as wonderful as parenting can be, it’s also really tough at times and I truly believe that to give the best to our kids, they need a village of people around them.
I was asked about what support my family have this week and when Timm and I thought about who we have around us who support us and the kids, it made us think.
Our village isn’t just about family but friends too. We are lucky to have our amazing friends Caroline and Jamie who have known our kids since being babies and love them dearly. We talked to the kids about how they are trusted adults who they can turn to if they need to talk to someone other than us.
And though my sister and brother in law live in Australia, we talked about how the kids can still turn to them too. The internet has made the world a lot smaller place and no matter where we are, we can still make that connection.
It can sometimes feel as a parent that you have to have all the answers, and that’s just not possible. It’s ok to not be able to be all things at all times to our kids, it’s ok to need to rely on your village sometimes.
We talk to our kids about the trusted adults in our lives, about who they can talk to and who can be their support systems when they need it.
And it’s not always about a traumatic time, we should be having wonderful people in our lives who can inspire and excite our kids about different lives they can lead.
My friend Hannah is a real role model to my child Eli, from her travels around the world to her attitude, humour and character, Eli loves spending time with her and really looks up to her and I love that!
Friends in the LGBTQ+ community can give my gay child the support, information and experience that I just can’t. Our musician and creative friends offer perspectives that we just don’t have. We should draw on the experiences of the brilliant people in our lives to be inspirations to our kids too.
Families are so different today, we live far away from eachother and most of us don’t have that immediate local family support that used to be more of the norm in the past. But our friends can become our families and we all need to lean on others sometimes.
I feel lucky and grateful for the many wonderful people in my life and I love my village of people. From those we see often to those who are on the end of a phone or who we only see from time to time, it’s a proper blessing to know so many awesome folk.
And I suppose the biggest difficulty can be being brave enough to speak up, reach out and ask for help. It’s ok to not be able to do it all alone, it’s ok to need your village.
As much as I am so glad of the people in my life and the life of my kids, I hope that Timm and I can also be a positive impact in the lives of all our friends and their kids too.