“It Takes A Village”, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s bestseller about how to raise compassionate, competent and resilient children, was written seventeen years ago. The title phrase has since been applied in many contexts to convey the idea that certain goals require a concerted, caring, community effort to be achieved.
Last week-end the three of us were sitting around discussing a difficult situation that has arisen in one of our lives. Many people will be involved in supporting those who are directly affected by it. And there will be a ripple effect outward to many others. Then Mary commented, “It takes a village”, and I got to thinking about our little village of 3friendswriting.com.
Although we have been friends for quite some time now, the book and blog adventure has involved us in an ever-deepening connection. First of all, we are meeting weekly and usually for several hours at a time. We share cooking and meals (lest we grow faint from hunger and fall over onto our keyboards).
I would have said we already knew each other pretty well. But in these many hours of talking about our characters and their stories, we are sharing ever more deeply about our own lives. Our personal histories; who we were and are; the friends who have graced our lives; the men we have loved; the losses and difficulties we have faced; the things we are ashamed of; the things we are proud of.
It takes time, and effort, and energy to forge these deeper kinds of connections. It makes you vulnerable. It makes you care. It makes you feel cared about. It makes you laugh. It makes you cry. It makes you face yourself honestly.
It makes you a village.
And you, dear reader, are a part of it.