When Neighbors Become Your Village
Sometimes I feel like the streets of our neighborhood are like the hallways of a college dorm. We are no longer on our parents’ payroll or sleeping through a class. Doing life right along side some of your closest friends is like a dream come true.
Finding neighbors you actually want to be friends with is priceless.
And not just a wave-from-the-driveway type of friendship, but the ones where you know the ins and outs of their lives and their families.
It’s the type of friendship that makes you knock down the fence between two yards and put in a gate (true story). We fill in the gaps of babysitters and out of town family. Their problems are our problems, and their successes are celebrated like our own. We’ve had heart to hearts and solved problems together. Hard times have brought us closer.
We find comfort knowing the neighborhood kids look after each other on the bus and at school without being prompted. Home extends beyond the walls of our house, and into the yards and homes of our neighbors. Their kids know where to find cups in my cupboard and snacks in my pantry and they feel right at home.
There are several doors we could knock on, and the person on the other side would drop anything, anytime, to help a friend.
We have held hands at funerals, and been present for births. We have prayed together during the surgery of a child, and welcomed each other’s kids into our home and to our kitchen table.
It’s a make yourselves at home, do without asking type of friendship that creates a village. It’s a show up unannounced type where no apologies are offered when our house (or our hair) is a mess.
We walk warm meals to each others’ front door, celebrate new jobs, goals met, and children’s milestones-together. We show up in the waiting room of the hospital when a child is sick from our village. Their struggle is our struggle, and we overcome together.
Having found your village doesn’t mean life is without struggle or conflict, but it means we weather those storms together. As a family. A chosen family.
Where sometimes our kids line between family and friends is so blurred, they forget they aren’t actually related.