Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Lately I've been thinking a lot about the concept of community and how my ideas about it have changed since having Alice. Growing up with a single mom who worked long hours to make ends meet, my community was essential to helping raise both my sister and me. We were the definition of latchkey kids and our welcoming and observant neighbors were always willing to make an extra sandwich for an after-school snack or set a few more plates for dinner for two little girls. Without those connections to our community and with what little adult supervision we often had at home, I'm not sure either of us would be where we are today.
Our conversations late at night after Alice has gone to bed often turn to what kind of community we want to live in and help create for our little family. Having lived in apartments for the last decade and a half, I've found that apartment living isn't usually conducive to getting to know your neighbors and making friends. Most people who rent apartments are in a holding pattern for something else. Waiting for that new job. Saving up for a first home. Or finishing school before moving onto the next thing. There is a transience in apartment dwellers that oftentimes impedes the building of a community.
Having Alice has helped me realize all that I want for her in where we ultimately live. Neighbors who look out for one another. Parents involved in the local schools. A feeling of safety as she plays outside with other neighborhood kids. A front lawn!!
And a backyard barbeque or two.
Are you in a holding pattern with where you are living? Or are you planning to live where you are for awhile?