I can’t imagine raising a child away from family. When we decided to move near James’ family, I didn’t know them very well yet. I had met them more than a few times, I had stayed on their beautiful farm, and I I had always felt loved and accepted by them. The move wasn’t risky. Yet 6 years later, I have a village that is more important to me than I could have ever known. A village where difference is acknowledged and okayed, where the drama of disagreement is matched with outspoken adoration for one another. I am part of that village, giving and receiving, navigating the ups and downs and trial and error of parenting. Always feeling loved. Always accepted. And Charlotte, I imagine these will be some of the most treasured memories of her childhood.
Now, if only I could also live a magical double life near my family in a world where Iowa is not burdened by a cold and brutal winter for 6 months of the year.