Today, I’m speaking to all those that have children in their lives that are not their own. For example, I have two boys that I love dearly and 4 biological nephews that I love dearly. I also have several other “nieces & nephews” that are not biological in any shape of the word but I love them just the same.
When I was a child, my grandmother raised me and my brother. I have an aunt that was very special to me. She was right in there with my grandparents molding and making me the person I am today. She got to do the fun things like take me to get my hair cut, practice softball with me, have “the talk”, you know all the “mom” things but without the pressure of being a mom. She made it fun and yes, occasionally, she had to discipline me (which is never fun for anyone). I always knew that I could go to her and talk about anything. It wasn’t always easy but I would always get the advice I needed. Now, I know she isn’t perfect and I know that sometimes she couldn’t give me the greatest advice because she didn’t ever live through what I was dealing with at the time. I didn’t care though because I loved her and always looked up to her. Some would say she was my hero. Over time and in different stages in life she has taken on different roles but I always have known she was there. It is because of her influence and example in my life that I decided to “adopt” some nieces….well some nephews too. Mainly, I am concentrating on those little girls. The ones that just want to be heard. I want to brighten some little girls day. I want to be what my aunt for me to another girl. It has nothing to do with glory, honor, praise, etc, it is nothing more than confidence building. Am I neglecting my family in doing this? Heavens no!! I love my boys and my nephews more than life itself. As this influence in these girls’ lives, I can be that “other mom”, that “fun mom” that listens to them, takes the extra time (because let’s face it as mom’s we are so busy with the duties of “mom” that we don’t always get to have fun with our children), that just pours into them and fills them up with goodness. This world is going to tear them down and make them feel defeated. We should all want to build each other up, let’s start it young.
I encourage each of you, find just one (more if you can do it) “niece or nephew” and encourage them. Love on them. Show them that there are many people in this world that love them. Take them to the movies just you and them. Take them for ice cream. Spend an afternoon fishing or shopping. Just spend one on one time with them. We are all influencing the little ones around us, whether we know it or not. Don’t you think it is best to be that “good” influence? The one that is stable and shows a good example. There are enough bad examples out there. Let’s add some positivity to this world, our world no matter how big or small. This world is going to tear them down and make them feel defeated, we should be building them up (no matter their age).
It take a village, folks, it takes a village.