I, on the other hand, being the wise and sage adult that I am, realize how special this is. To be able to step outside our back door into a huge backyard that comes complete with same-aged playmates is such an incredible bonus, and it has kept us in our tiny ground floor aparment far longer than we intended to stay (well... that and Vancouver's insane housing market).
Before Lilah came along, we mainly stayed within the confines of our patio, not realizing what an incredible resource we had just beyond the gate. These days, that gate is like a magic portal for Lilah, opening up to a world of adventure, play, and friendship. But it isn't just the children who have formed strong bonds (and when I say strong, I mean, in some cases, almost sibling-like, as evidenced by the sibling rivalry these kids sometimes display). The parents have also become close, and the Hubs and I now count some of these amazing people among our inner circle.
|As we often have to reassure inquisitive strangers: |
"Nope, not twins. Not even related, though they sometimes fight like siblings."
These are the kind of friends who don't judge your parenting when your kid is having a rough day and lashes out at theirs; the kind you feel comfortable leaving your child with at any given moment; the kind who could and would, if necessary, seamlessly and gently discipline your child in your absence. (Also the kind who would drop everything to courier you the charger for the special lithium battery for your beloved D-SLR camera while you are vacationing across the country. Yes, this actually happened too. Forgetting it at home was not my proudest moment.)
This isn't the first time I have written of the sense of community we have found where we are living, and it won't be the last. I feel so incredibly lucky to have stumbled upon such good neighbours, such great friends, and such a supportive parenting community, all in one fell swoop.