My dearest children,
They say that it takes a village to raise a child. That, in order to meet every human being's unique and diverse needs, they need to be surrounded by pillars of strength that will raise them up to their fullest potential.
There are very few things in life that I can claim to know with absolute certainty, but I know this to be true.
You are both too young to comprehend selflessness; too young to know of sacrifice and of gratitude. So, on your behalf, I will allow my cup of thankfulness to overflow and I rest my heart each night cognizant of thr incredibly blessed existence that you both live.
I shed tears of appreciation for our village, and tonight is my Thanksgiving.
Let me introduce you to your neighbours, dear ones. Not the ones who share our fences, but the ones who share in and help to write your story.
Let me tell you of the people I am honoured to call my friends.
Let me tell you of the teachers- some by trade, and others by passion. They are the ones I turn to when I lack the knowledge for how to best guide you. They fill my mind with resources and tools to help nurture and grow you in every way. They are my living encyclopedias of information, my sounding boards, my tireless wells of opportunity and growth. They have guided me through, from the very first time I dreamt of your faces, to your birth, and every stage of life that has followed since. They are my mentors.
Let me tell of you of the healers, some by trade, and others by passion. They are the ones who teach me of the wonder of the human body. They cherish my ability to grow and sustain life, amd carry this force through the years as I continue to nurture your spirits. They mend my wounds, on my body and on my soul, caring and treating every scar back to life. They have seen me broken. They have made me whole again.
Let me tell you of the counsellors, some by trade and others by passion. They are the ones to whom I intrust my deepest fears and my grandest hopes. They wipe the tears from my cheeks, and share laughter and joy with me in moments of triumph. They open their hearts when my own needs a safe place to rest. They give without condition, relentlessly committed to our happiness.
Let me tell you about your family, the greater community that we engage with. They are the ones whose lives and experiences bring meaning to our own. Let me tell you how each of them is a constant reminder that we are not alone, that together we are building a world much larger than what we see here today.
Let me tell you about the jokers.
About the entertainers.
About the athletes.
About the politicians.
About the musicians.
About the brothers, and the sisters, and the fathers and the mothers...
Let me tell you about them all.
These people, these pillars in our lives.
Let me tell you how, because of them, you are never really alone.
We are one community.
Let me tell you of them, and when I do, let me teach you to be like them. For there is no expression of gratitude or flattery finer than to emulate the good works you have been shown and to share more love in the world.
Let me teach you to be mirrors, reflecting always the kindess, love, compassion and support that you receive.
Let me tell you of the wonderful village of friendship that we call home. And let me teach you to take from it, and when you are older, build onto it. Help it to spread. Help it to grow.
Because it takes a village to raise a child.
And it takes a village to lead a full and rich life.
I am so very grateful for mine.