Tuesday, January 29, 2008

a village and more bedding

When I've heard people say that it takes a village to raise a kid, I usually think of the kid. That Mr. 1 would teach him how to fish and Mrs. 2 would teach him how to share and Mr. and Mrs. 3 would teach him how to build a house. I thought it meant that everybody in the village looks out for the kid, but also teaches the kid the thing that they know.

But now I am realizing that it is not just the kid that needs care.

Yesterday was low. I wrote yesterday's post in the morning, and it might have been a bad omen because yesterday was one long and ugly battle. Against the computer, against the fatigue, and against Andrew.

When I became a parent one thing that kept taking me by surprise was how important it was for me to take care of myself. The whole family did better when I took care of myself. But I still thought it was up to me. I needed to care for myself. Well, yesterday was a day when I wasn't even able to do that.

And it turned out, I didn't really need to.

I called in the village. First on my blog, a call for advice. Then a friend for some words of encouragement. Another friend called and said she would take Andrew for a morning so I could have a little break. Dave came home with hit-the-spot sweets and hugs and sit-and-listens and he did the dishes. Comments came in that encouraged me and comforted me and sent me to the store for magnesium suppliments.

Well, village? Thank you. It worked. Last night I slept long and hard. Today I was able to get out of bed without much trouble. All day I felt supported and rested and just so much better.

When microsoft word ate my work today, I used a different writing program. No problem. When Andrew tried to convince me that his diaper was clean and I must be smelling something else, I distracted him with gadgets and changed him quickly. Today was not without it's bumps, but the bumps didn't do me in like yesterday. And I think that the reason was I knew I wasn't doing this alone. I had my support. The village was tested and it held strong.

So I thank you and Andrew thanks you. And probably Dave too. Someone smart and poetic needs to change the phrase of "It takes a village to raise a child" to something like "Everybody needs a village."

Thanks again.

and check out the new sheets. I made the second set of Andrew's sheet today. Don't be too impressed. It just meant hemming large pieces of fabric and making a quick pillow case. Stay tuned though. You might be impressed later in the week.

You just never know.


Holly said...

So nice to hear that you had a good day. You sure got a lot of advice and you're right...that's a wonderful thing...knowing that there are people in our lives that truly care about how we're feeling can make you feel better in itself.

I think Mom's continually struggle with guilt about taking care of ourselves first, but you're right about this too...the family is much happier when you are happy. How can we expect to take care of others, when we don't properly take care of ourselves?

You are wonderful-always remember this and cut yourself some slack!

Robyn said...

Holly, did Miss Vicki tell you to say that? ;)

thedanceofthegates said...

Yes. I wish I had a literal village sometimes.

Tara Whalen said...

You have some awesome blog readers there sis.
I had no advise on the sleeping thing, since my 18 mon old JUST started fully sleeping through the night, except this. Warm baths. They relax you, warm you, and more importantly warm your brain which helps you sleep fabulously!