By Tommi Vincent
How strong is your village? It really does take a village to assist us in raising our children. Even in a two-parent home, Troy and I rely on the support of family and friends. The quality of individual matters. We have learned from our past experience, just because a relationship is familiar does not mean they fit the bill to be a part of the village. Children’s lives are shaped by their experiences as children. The interaction they have, positive or negative, get etched into their minds. As parents, we have to be vigilant gatekeepers for their mind’s sake.
Troy and I parent from our faith and values. We have surrounded ourselves with other families who do the same. Our village is always under evaluation. Some of our support may be for the different seasons of our life and may need to be adjusted as the children mature. As the children mature, their weaknesses begin to emerge. We must make sure our village is feeding the best parts of them, not enabling areas they need to develop. In order to be in tune this way, as parents, we have to be aware of our children as they evolve. We cannot get so engulfed in life, nor complacent with the norms. The trap of routine can cause us to zone out from what our children’s current needs are. The village is not in place for the parent’s convenience, it is about the well-being of the children. We may have a pressing engagement and need someone to step in and assist with the kids. If we are not careful, our need will trump what is in the best interest of our child(ren). Our standards will be convoluted, and that is where the compromise starts. In actuality it is the children who are being compromised.
We have an awesome responsibility as parents. Let’s sure up our villages to ensure the lives of our children are being impacted positively. Let’s set them up to win!