It was my birthday on the weekend and John went above and beyond like he always does to make me feel special and spoil me as much as our limited “spoiling” budget allows. I was genuinely surprised by how special everyone made me feel. Like I just turned 32. It’s not a huge birthday. It’s not a milestone. It’s just 32. But my friends wouldn’t allow me to NOT celebrate it. They had to take me out for drinks. They insisted. I’m not one to turn down a girl’s night out, especially one in my honour! So we went out and had a few drinks and a lot of laughs and it was so nice. I just went home feeling like I had a village here in my small town, even though my other village is way over in Ontario. I never thought I would get a village here. Honestly. I never thought that I could feel as at home here as I do in Ontario. But it’s happening. That’s the biggest thing that’s happened in my life this past year.
And I know exactly how it happened.
Last January I started a playgroup at our church as an act of service for the community. I saw a need for one, I saw that our church had the space and resources. So with a lot of help from our head office, I started one. Just me, and my kids, and a bunch of donated toys. We advertised and we unlocked the doors and we waited. People came. LOTS of people came. More people that I ever expected to come. It was such a success! And 1 year later it still is.
This act of service has benefited so many people. But surprisingly, the person it benefitted most was me. All these new people I had never met showed up with their kids to the playgroup. Moms in the same walk of life as me, who all live so very close to me. Moms of kids who play T-ball with my boys, and who take their kids to the same Preschool we go to. Moms who moved here from Ontario without any family around (like me). Moms with babies that don’t sleep (like Tilly), kids who don’t care about potty training (like William), and kids who have a few delays (like Henry). Moms that have become my friends, my good friends, my best friends. My genuine friends. My Village.
And it has literally changed my life for the better.
Cheers to 32.