It takes a village to raise a child. I am a major believer in that phrase. In my pre-baby life I would hear the phrase and then smile and nod. Yes, it takes a village but 'I got this' was my previous mantra. Pre-baby, I would be so proud of the fact that I was an independent woman! Sure, I relied on God sometimes but help from others? no, it's okay, I got this. I didn't want to be a bother and I was confident that I could do things all by my lonesome. And then I had a baby.
Before Luca, I thought, oh a baby! It will be so darling! We'll just go to the backyard and lounge all day and instagram.....(insert crazy/crying laugh HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA). Sorry to burst your bubble (if you are a little bit naive like I was) but becoming a parent has been the hardest thing I have ever done. And I like to think that I have done hard things. Lead teams of volunteers, live in another country at 18, direct conferences, preach, missions trips, run a half marathon, etc, etc...yep, becoming a parent has been harder than all of those things put together. I have seen more tears in the past 6 weeks than in the past 6 months, heck, probably the past 6 years. Oh, how I needed (and still need) my village.
The first two weeks were INSANE. I was a teary, snotty, anxious mess. All of a sudden my world was turned upside down. I had been entrusted this tiny, crying baby who didn't come with a manual. Oh, and my body was feeling as if it had done 6 marathons. Oh and did I mention I was hardly sleeping, ha. I didn't like going into public because I would burst into tears if someone asked me how I was. I lashed out at James way too often. I constantly watched Luca because I was paranoid he would suddenly stop breathing. But my village intervened.
My village made meals when my only goal of the day was to feed my baby...shower if I'm lucky. My village helped with housework and laundry (true friends right there). My village answered my constant questions and gave advice with no judgement. My village held my baby so I could nap. My village gave me hugs, kind words from God and prayers that I needed so desperately. My village blessed my baby with clothes, diapers and toys. My village poured out love and brought flowers. My village reminded me that God chose me to be Luca's mom and that He would give me all that I need. My village loved on James too. My village reminded us that as parents, our need for God would be greater than ever and that's a good thing.
Oh, how I love my village.
My village showed me that it's okay to ask for help. My village showed me that it's essential to accept help. My village revealed how much I need my village. My village inspired me to look around and be a village to others.
We are not meant to be alone. God never intended us to do this whole life thing alone. I'm extremely extroverted and I still have to be constantly reminded that I can't do this alone. Community can be a messy thing...people are complicated but it can also be a very beautiful thing. I hope and pray that you have a village like my village.
My village reminded me of who I was and that I was capable. And I'm proud to say that at six weeks postpartum, I know with all of my heart that that is true. I'm doing this mom thing and I have confidence (imagine that!) and I don't cry everyday anymore, ha! It's still hard but I truly believe that 'I got this'....but not on my own...with the support of my amazing God and my village.