It Takes a Village

One of the most rewarding things I’ve ever experienced is being a parent. It has at times been one of the hardest. I was a Mom at 17. My daughter was my world. Everything I did after I found out I was pregnant, I did for her.

I took very good care of myself throughout my pregnancy. I exercised, ate healthy, drank lots of water. Unfortunately a UTI set me into early labor. My daughter spent the first six weeks in the Special Care Nursery. She had daily visits from my family and myself. She grew, got healthy and was finally able to come home.

Now my situation was not typical for a new Mom. I lived with my parents. So all of us made sure my daughter was well taken care of. I graduated high-school and earned an Associate’s Degree from a local Technical College. This meant studying. Lots of hours of studying. My parents (God love them) would be there helping with Kris so I could do what I needed to finish my schooling.

It wasn’t always easy though. My Mom still looked at me as a child. When I set rules down for my daughter as she grew, my Mom didn’t see a problem with undermining me. She could not see that in doing so, she was teaching my daughter to disrespect me. It was a constant struggle. It also hurt to feel I was being disciplined in front of my daughter for disciplining her.

My Mom will be gone a year this Friday. I miss her dearly. I do not mean to speak ill of her. She fought for us and loved us. The position she was in, could not have been an easy one. She was Grandma but was there every step of the way as was I. I think the lines got blurred. When I was working or in class, she was taking care of Kris.

Was it the ideal situation? No. But I thank God I had both my parents there. Supporting us every step of the way while I finished my education, so that I could care for my daughter.

I guess the point is, it’s never easy raising kids. When you are young and must rely on others, it comes with its ups and downs. Everyone wants what is best for the child. But it sure makes it difficult to establish yourself as the parent when you feel everything you do is being undermined.

I moved out of town with Kris for a short time. It was one of the best decisions I ever made. She only had me. I established myself as her Mom. There wasn’t anyone there handing her the things I was saying no to. There wasn’t any scolding when I scolded her. I established the respect from her as her parent.

Over the years this was an issue for me. I think over time she came to realize my position as I came to realize hers. Nothing she did was intentional. No malice was meant. She loved us and saw herself as my daughter’s Mom despite that I was always there. I look back and as I said I am grateful for everything my parents did for us. They sacrificed sleep, so I could study. Sacrificed time together to pick up Kris from s book while I was working.

When a village raises a child, there’s going to be pros and cons. The most important thing is for everyone to work together in the best interest of the child. To be a team. The goal is to love, nurture and raise a well adjusted human being. It’s not a competition for likes. It’s not a popularity contest.

22 thoughts on “It Takes a Village”

      1. My oldest is a professional piano ๐ŸŽน player and my two youngest sons are professional ballet dancers. Music is my life. I too play the piano ๐ŸŽน.

      2. I love playing. Since my car accident 100 years ago, I had paralysis on my left side. Funny how the brain compensates. Instead of using all 10 fingers to play, I now play with 8. My pinky and ring finger on my left hand never came back. I still think to walk away with only those two permanent injuries I was sooo lucky. At the time of the accident I was a secretary and typing was part of my job description so I also only type with 8 fingers now. Still not complaining ๐Ÿ˜‰

  1. Thank you for being so kind. I say thank you ๐Ÿ™๐Ÿป to God for all the grace he had given me and protecting me during my darkest of days. I feel blessed by all of these experiences. I am a great mom b/c I lost my Sean Patrick. There has not been a day gone by that I donโ€™t thank God for my other 4 children. Life is so fragile. Just always be thankful for what you have. No my life has not been perfect nor have I been a perfect mom. But every day I just show up and keep trying. My motto for life is, โ€œDo no harm,โ€ and leave places better. Love you, Mz. Laura. We are now blogging buddies ๐Ÿ™ƒ

    1. Always be thankful for what we have. Every soul is precious. No parent should have to bury their child. I have dear friends that lost their son. I was at the hospital on day it happened. Iโ€™ve never been more at a loss for words. I just sat by her holding her hand. We are blog buddies now!! It is my honor! ๐Ÿ’•

  2. I am that mom…I took my adult daughter (19 may be 20) back into our home to support her as she too was going to be a single mom. The only request I made was that she would not have anything to do with the father (that’s all I’ll say about that to make sure my granddaughter never learns the truth about the father, even by accident).. After we supported our daughter and sent her back to college so she could become an RN, she took her daughter away from us. She went back to the father, had 2 more daugher’s. It just about killed me as the love I had for my granddaughter was no less than that I had for her. I was there for her in her pregnancy, delivery (I cut the chord) and took care of her daughter while she became a nurse. I’ll never regret taking her back and helping her because now I know for sure it was all her and her lying ways and bad decisions that she created and now will live with forever. I pray for her and her daughters. I’ll never get that knife out of my back…Sorry for the sad, sad ending ;(

      1. I pray a lot and just let God watch over me and everyone. I hope that God will help me to forgive my daughter because I really donโ€™t ever see that happening. Thanks for caring Mz. Laura … My faith tells me Gad has a plan, my heart tells a different story. ๐Ÿ’”

      2. Thanks sweets … When we pray together we are stronger as are the prayers. Iโ€™m 60 years old next month ahhh!! I was just about killed in a car accident when I was 21. Traumatic brain injury, paralyzed… Iโ€™ve buried one son. My sweet Sean Patrick ๐ŸŒท. God is watching, from s distance ๐ŸŒบ๐ŸŒบ. Blessings Mz. Laura …

  3. I agree. Itโ€™s a blessing to have parents to help you, even if thereโ€™s some annoyance as well. I was married but my mom was a lifesaver with my two girls because my exโ€™s career came first. He was never home, and my mom pitched in when we were sick, tired, and just whenever. She was an incredible person. My dad did his part too by being supportive of her time away from him. Well, he treasured that, lol, so he could read in peace. ๐Ÿ’–

  4. I agree. To have support as a parent whether young or older, is a blessing. But grandparent(s) will let the kids get away with stuff when you’re trying to lay the law down or they deny, deny, deny when you question “you never used to let me do that” but its grandparent(s).

    I believe your Mom appreciated you making an effort, because some young parents won’t even try.

    1. It was a blessing even if there were times it felt otherwise. Boundary lines were definitely crossed. But it all worked out. My daughter is grown and a loving and beautiful young woman. Very proud of her.