Her Village

“It takes a village to raise a child.”

The African proverb implies that children will learn and grow from many people and different experiences in their lives as long as they are given such opportunities.  This has always been the case for our kids.  It is the nature of our family.  But this phrase is taking on multiple meanings for the Carey family these days–literally and figuratively.

I mean literally as of lately.  Like an actual village.of.people…catch my drift?  I grew up in a small town, got married and moved to an even smaller town.  I often hear my friends say how “they never want to live in a small town again,” or “how small towns are so dramatic and terrible.”  But behind their snarky criticism of small town living I know that their roots run deep, and who they are today is partially shaped by those very roots.  Personally I would not trade rural community life…not for a condo in the city, not for the busy streets and traffic lights.  Why?  Well for a number of reasons like it just isn’t for me.

Possibly the biggest reason is because while city life is often unpredictable, the same always remains true about small towns:  when hardship is bestowed on someone, there is never a shortage of helping hands.  Support overflows even if it isn’t always needed, and differences are set aside in order to make painful times a little easier.  The [Merriam Webster] dictionary defines community as a group of people living in the same area with similar interests, etc.  I define community as a fellowship of people rallying together for one another in good and unfortunate times.  A community consists of silent heroes lifting spirits and raising expectations for future generations.

So when I say literally, I mean like this…Belmont hat day

Today was hat day at Casin’s school for Tessa.  Yesterday was dress wild and crazy day.  All to help raise money and awareness for childhood cancer while showing tremendous support to Casin and the rest of our family.  Casin felt so special and was very proud.  (Plus I am pretty sure the rest of the kids really enjoyed themselves from the sounds of it.)

Before this was a visit from Tessa’s primary doctor back home and a friend.  A quick visit that was captured in some very sweet pictures taken that day.  These are a few of the pictures that I will cherish as a part of this journey.

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Photo credit: Julie Stephenson

And there have been cards, gifts, gift cards, delicious meals, donations, phone calls, warm hugs, dried tears and so much more extended to us from our community of support over the last several months.  There has been more love poured out that could ever fit on this blog.

That is what keeps my roots planted.  I believe in the goodness of small towns and the people that fill them.  Community is not just about where we live, it is about what we do.

To say we are proud or grateful doesn’t adequately describe our feelings tonight.  From Tessa’s village we will learn and we will grow.

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