Tonight on the Nomad Mom facebook page, I asked people what role they would have in the “village” it takes to raise our kids.
Crazily enough, some of you answered. There was a shrink and a nurse, a court jester and someone who had to do everything because her village was really small.
I asked the question because in part I wanted to know how all of you see yourselves. The other part of it is that lately I have been feeling like the village idiot and I wanted to see if anyone else was there along with me (Thanks Shawna – court jester is close enough!).
In my village of 2 (me and Nomad Papa) who have to raise these kids of our so far away from family and friends, I am pretty sure that I am the village idiot. Sometimes that is a good thing – like when you need someone to add some levity to the situation by cracking a joke in the challenging times.
Sometimes though, it leaves me wondering who fell down on their job of looking after me and let me have not one but two kids to keep track of.
Case in point, this morning I walked into my 4.5 year old’s room to discover her sleeping buried under the covers with a pile of wet clothes by the side of her bed. When we managed to unearth her from her cavern of blankets, we discovered a giant wet spot on the bed. My kid had peed in her bed in the middle of the night, gotten up and completely changed clothes and then moved over to the dry side of the bed and gone back to sleep. Without saying a word.
Some parents would have chastised their kid for the accident. Others would have pointed out, quite rightly, that if the kid is old enough to change clothes alone in the middle of the night, they are old enough to take themselves to the bathroom.
But not the village idiot. I jumped right in with a round of applause and pat on the back for her having solved the problem on her own without waking me up. If she does it again tonight, I’ll have no one to blame but myself. And I’ll probably still congratulate her on a job well done tomorrow morning.
Now that we know my role, I’ll ask you all again. Where do you fit into the great big parenting village? Are you the inspirational leader guiding us from the top? Are you the crazy medicine woman cooking up magic in her dark tent? Or are you just one of the women, pitching in a hand whenever anyone needs it.
The truth of the matter is that all of these roles are equally important. We need a village idiot just as much as we need a superhero and a housecleaner. We need women of all shapes, sizes and abilities to come in and teach us a thing or two about succeeding and failing and picking ourselves back up again. We need each other. Let’s not forget it.