I’ve been thinking often lately about how we as humans used to live – in groups, in communities, in extended family units closely knit to one another. We had tribes. Not even too long ago, when one family needed help to raise a barn, to build a fence, to care for livestock, there were people there you could count on – because you were there for them too, and that was how everyone prospered and survived.
Then something happened, and we split apart. It became a sign of weakness to ask for help, and people are now less inclined to ‘meddle’ in the lives of others. I think greed became a big part of it, worrying that your neighbour wanted (or was getting) more than you were. Entitlement, working for one’s self, all of these things have contributed, I think, to us growing apart.
It’s a strange feeling, though, to have a small child, and to recognize the need for that little person to meet people, learn how to be a friend and care for others, and then to see in yourself a pull towards those people, too.
It’s almost alarming, to enjoy spending time with another family, and to have your heart swell to see the children interact (usually running around stark naked in someone’s backyard) and then to find that society dictates that you deal with your own problems – your own metaphorical barn-raisings – independent of others because to do otherwise is considered ‘needy’ or pathetic.
My friend Jess shared this article the other day that really struck a chord in me. Motherhood, raising a family, all of it is hard enough without an expectation that we do it all alone.
So I’m trying to find my tribe, I guess.