We had a great weekend last week.
Almost our entire family, Mom and Ray, Dad and Jen, Karen and Bob all made a huge effort to be here and celebrate Layla's baptism.
To say that we were thankful is an understatement. They made a lot of effort to get here and they were all here to help us start Layla's spiritual life. We ate, drank and everyone loved on Layla.
In the Lutheran service, there's a part that the congregation has to respond that they will help us as parents, and that they commit to helping Layla on her spiritual journey. Its my favorite part of the baptism service. I like it because it's truly about community. It's about being responsible for each other. It's about being strong when others are weak and having strength to count on when you are weak. To me, it's about love. There's a similar part in most wedding services- the community is asked if they will do everything they can to help and support the couple. The link is clear- we are told at these critical points in our lives that we can not do it alone. We need others. We need each other.
Our daughter needs more than just her parents to be her best self. She needs her grandparents, her community, and anyone else who will love her and bring her joy. It was very evident to me this weekend how much Layla will be raised by a village, and how very much she will benefit from that. I've said it many times, but she truly does have so many people that already love her.
Dad baptized Layla. After he carried her around the congregation. He said to the congregation that they had a responsibility to Layla. He said that, in light of the fact that they would see Layla more than any of the grandparents, they were deputized in grandparenthood and caregiving, not just for Layla, but for Mike and I.
We need each other to be our best and to be our strongest. I deeply believe this sentiment. It was driven home this weekend by the fact that our family, which has at times been broken, at times been angry and hurt, at times been selfish and determined to "go it alone," came together to form our own little community. Warts and all, it's ours. And I am so proud to be part of such a strong, loving and unconventional family.