For as long as memory serves me, I have been most at home with myself. Perfectly content to be lost in my own thoughts, only relying on inner turmoil to make final decisions. I don’t even know what I would have been considered as a teenager, though I doubt loner would apply in the typical sense. I never considered the word ‘loner’ to have a negative connotation, because I could completely relate to it. Maybe even had a twinge of envy towards my classmates that preferred to be alone and wore the confidence to do so like a badge. I had a lovely group of friends throughout adolescence, we were close and though that circle has gotten smaller with age I would still do anything for those girls. There is a fondness, a bond that is forged during those tender years that even time cannot erase. Although I was content to be independent, I have a sincere gratitude for those relationships. As an adult I have discovered that there is a label for people like me. Social introvert. It fits perfectly, and I often wonder if I might have had a better understanding and peace with myself had I known that my tendencies were perfectly natural and shared by many others.
These musings bring me to today. The village. As an adult, I have pushed past my comfort zones because I knew it was entirely necessary. In the process I have met women who are strong, weak, angry, independent, reserved, and all the above. They are beautiful in all of their inadequacies and fierce in all of their struggles. I have watched some endure conflict in silence, while others band together to heal their wounds.
It almost brings me to tears every time I think about how incredibly blessed I am to have these women in my life. We are not a circle, not a clique, many of these ladies don’t even know each other. Though I rely on each for very different reasons. God placed each and every one in my life for a reason and I would do anything that I could to help them in a time of need. The most satisfying feeling is knowing that they would do the same for me. We are raising our children together, being a shoulder to cry on, the first to send an SOS out for help is one of us falls on hard times, the list goes on. You see I made the realization, the tight-knit village of years past never died. Of course it has changed and morphed over time to accommodate for the modern world, but the underlying warmth, life and most importantly – necessity – has never changed. The village is just as important today as in years past.
It is the place where love grows, relationships breed and women thrive in preparation for the seasons of life.