I am feeling a little sad today.
Not sad for me.
Sad for ‘them’.
Sad for ‘us’.
From 5 years old most children are herded off to school. This in itself is not sad. Most kids seem quite accepting of this arrangement.
But it means ‘we’ miss out on Kids.
It strikes me as strange, because until you operate outside of this, you don’t even notice it.
If your children behave ‘nicely’ you will receive smiles and nods of approval.
If your children move too fast, sing too loud, ask too many questions, make noise, run…
So I feel sad. Sad that in order to venture out into the world I must drill my children with ‘expectation’ and ‘ rules’. I feel we must stay home or restrict ourselves to the ‘approved’ ways, and stick to our segregations.
This means meeting only at mothers groups and homeschool groups, and attending the appropriate matinee, eating out at the appropriate places.
When did society get so segregated?
Is this good? bad? meaningless?
With my firstborn I lived for my Mum’s Group. That weekly outing was wonderful. We even went along to the playgroup (even though she was a baby) because it meant we were a part of something. But I didn’t really belong there. It made other people uncomfortable.
When my second was born, I joined the Australian Breastfeeding Association. That was gold. I could have a baby, a toddler, a preschooler, all of the above: or none! And I was welcome. I felt I had found a village. Of sorts. It was a village of mothers and children…so whilst a good support…
With my third, we were still, as always, welcome and comfortable at ABA. But we had moved an hour away and my first two were school-aged but not at school, and we are outgrowing this segregation. As our needs and interests change, we seek community closer to home, and found it with a home-based friendship group.
The Modern World is complex and busy, structured, organised, ordered. Community must be re-created.
You’re not supposed to get out of your box…
The box is an illusion of safety. It frees us of responsibility, as we follow the rules of others. If we take that responsibility back, we are able to express Our Power. To shine and lead, to support others and create community. Be the change.