It takes a village…
Have you heard that expression before?
Usually, this saying is used to demonstrate how many people it takes for a child to mature successfully. However, I have a different take on this!
It takes a village because moms cannot do it alone! It is not that they are not capable or caring enough, it is just that being a good mother is seriously hard work! It’s a 24 hour job that has you always on call and alert. While there may be lulls in a normal work day, in mothering any quiet is just the calm before the storm.
This is not to paint a dismal picture of mothering. My entire life, I wanted most to be a mom and it is still my greatest joy and accomplishment. That doesn’t change the fact that it is also the most difficult and challenging job I have ever had.
Here are seven reasons that moms (especially homeschool moms) need a village and a “tribe.”
We Don’t Have All The Answers
I can remember my mom routinely mentioning that kids should come with instruction manuals. She was only half kidding. The further I get in my own parenting journey, the more I realize the truth in her laughing quib.
It is impossible to know everything. That is what makes learning exciting, however it makes parenting daunting at times. There is a never ending stream of catching up and figuring out. We just so much as catch our breath in one stage than our child moves into another.
Having those who are knowledgeable about whichever stage or challenge we are facing is the gentlest way to find our way through. Since no one can know everything, a village of sage leaders is required.
We Are Social Creatures
Woman was never meant to exist in a vacuum. Raising children should not place you behind an impenetrable wall! Humans thrive on personal interaction. Children need, and demand, attention and socialization. This is not a need that disappears as we age. We still need and often crave the company of others, even us introverts!
Family life used to take place in a village where neighbors were intermingled among everyday life. In modern times, most of us do not even know our physical neighbors. This has made being neighborly more difficult, however we still need a community to be at our best.
Our Gifts Are Greater When We Share
Each of us is unique, and thank God for that! It makes our world so much richer because of our diversity. Life would be very boring, and difficult, if we were all the same! If we had all been created bridge builders, we would have nothing to eat or wear, and entertainment would be sorely lacking.
Our individual gifts and talents shine brightest when used with others’. Being a part of a community not only gives us a chance to showcase our talents but, we get to benefit from everyone else’s talents, as well.
We Care Better When Others Care, Too
How much self-care time do you have? Not much? None?
Raising children is time consuming. Finding time for yourself can seem impossible. If left isolated, it is easy to let our own care slip through the cracks. We give up on healthy practices and making time for what makes us feel better. Eventually, we lose ourselves buried under an avalanche of thinking everyone else is more important.
When there are others who care about us, who engage with us, and support us for being ourselves, we blossom. Caring for yourself as a human being and not just enough to get you “mom work” done leads to a happier, healthier life for the entire family.
We Are Students Not Just Teachers
Education is a life long process. Our brains need stimulation and exercise to maintain good health. When we only take the time to instruct our children, we suffer greatly. We need others to teach us. Even self directed learners need community to learn and grow.
Learning from others is natural. The concept of a village comes from the need for others. Staying a student will benefit our children more than abandoning our own education for the sake of theirs.
The Village Teaches From The Past And For The Future
Going back to the two points of us all being students and children don’t come with instructions, it is the village that provides the instruction. Knowledge of the past has always been passed down through generations. This is the instructional manual that moms need.
Yes every child is different but there is nothing new under the sun. What makes a village a better resource than just a parenting book is fellow villager actually know you and probably your children. Personalized instruction and advice is always more helpful than that generated for the masses. Why reinvent the wheel? Ask someone who’s already been there!
We Are More Than Just Moms
Being a mom is an amazingly awesome responsibility. It should never be discounted just because it does not provide a salary. No matter what your employment status, you have a more than full time career! Never doubt your importance!!
However, being a mom is not our sole definition. We remain woman with unique gifts and needs. We have all heard the cup analogy–can’t pour from an empty cup! How can we get filled up if we never switch out of mom mode, even if only partially for a little while?
Our village needs each of us. As we are filling our cup and learning the ropes, our presence fills other cups. To have the village every mom needs, we need every mom to have a village!
So go fill that cup with some Communi-TEA, I hear that Kelly has plenty to share!