Nope. Not a typo. I know it is the Fourth of July. Happy Independence Day, everyone, and special thanks to our troops and veterans!

Grandma (my dear Mother-In-Law) is coming to visit us today, which means we’ll soon be having fireworks of our own. Everyone aged four to eighty-four in our house will be claiming “independence.”

I can do it myself! I don’t need your help! I’m in charge!

fireworks over a bright cityscape

fireworks by bayasaa via flickr

I think I’m starting to see that this isn’t really true for any of us, however. Even the most strong-willed and able-bodied among us need a little help now and then. We all think we’re so self-sufficient, but really…we’ve come a long way from the pioneer days, and most of us wouldn’t stand a chance under the conditions our forefathers endured.

I suppose *physically* I could get along just fine without my children, but emotionally, spiritually, and every other -ly, I need them as much as they need me. They are teaching me patience, self-control, joy, and perseverance in a way that no one else ever has. They have shown me the beauty in an insect, the joy of pure silliness, and the triumph of overcoming an obstacle.

I need my husband who is the best partner in this parenting adventure. I need his wisdom, his different perspective, his love, and his insight.

I need my fellow moms – both those who share the special needs journey and those who don’t. I need their compassion, their understanding, and their willingness to sit down and listen to me hash out my latest kid-related dilemma.

I need community, and family, and far away friends. I know it isn’t always perfect. It is really easy to get sucked into the divisive drama that pervades our society, but I’m learning that as much as I want to do it all on my own, there is just no way I’m going to make it on that basis.

So as we celebrate our independence, let’s remember how much we need each other to make it work.

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