Red Shoulder Hawk

Red Shoulder Hawk

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Invisible Structure: Community

Permaculturists learn to consider "invisible structures," those aspects of our lives that emerge from the physical structures we build or steward. Our co-housing neighbors are in some pretty intense meetings as they proceed on condoizing, and their kids need to hang out somewhere not underfoot; The solution is my house!

My housemate took the babysitting responsibility, so I got to practice my skills at being a favorite uncle (or someday, grandfather!). The littlest one was the most fun. His soundtrack consisted of four syllables: "mommydaddeeemommydaddeeemommydaddeee!" Oh, yes, and a fifth, used as punctuation: "up!"

I tried many things, but the one that worked was to squeeze in the answer, "Later, before bedtime," when he took a breath. This short answer, that he'd see them later, got in his head, and he needed less "up!" after that.

I love supporting my neighbors like this. Someday I might reminisce about my mom parenting all the neighborhood kids when they'd play at our house, and how parenting other people's kids falls in and out of favor.

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