It's pretty clear to me that the stuff I'm actively working on every day is stuff that really excites me and makes me happy and proud. I'm certain that what has me feeling nervous and stressed is the fact that despite all of the wonderful promise, Raising Little Heroes is showing some signs that it may in fact fail after all...or not be "successful" on the level it appears it could be at this time. I've managed to make meaningful connections with a great list of organizations that will definitely all be sources of some amazing projects for our group in the near future and beyond. People are excited...people working for established organizations that I admire are asking to meet with me in person to talk about how we can partner up...these are the organizations I've not only contacted but have had concrete "can't wait to work with you!" or "I'm making a list of project ideas for you!" conversations/exchanges with:
The Humane Society
The Red Cross
Parenting Place (a local nonprofit supporting families)
Parks and Recreation (we're adopting a big, beautiful city park!)
Special Olympics of Colorado
Safehouse Progressive Alliance for Nonviolence
United Way (Volunteer Connection)
Community Food Share
Denver Children's Hospital
...and there are many more avenues to explore....the possibilities are endless and the potential is really great. The trouble is, no matter how fearlessly I go about the stuff that I can somewhat control, it will only succeed if people actually sign up for and participate in the projects. This is no easy task no matter how much enthusiasm there is for the group in theory. The reality of busy lives, holidays and the general exhaustion that accompanies the life of any parent seems to unfortunately stand in the way a lot of the time. It's difficult because I can relate to why people aren't flocking to sign up for stuff...and I understand completely that I am totally obsessed with this right now and no one else is (or should be) so it's totally reasonable to think that those sign up sheets will just slowly fill up and I'll have Nathan saying "I told you so" by this time next month...but, I can't help but let that naysayer in me convince my whole self that it's silly to think it's going to work out the way I dream it will.
That said, the reality is that it's definitely not that NO ONE is responding. I do have a handful (at least) of families I hadn't met before this who are really digging it and telling me they are, even if they can't make it to every project/event. If nothing else, we have a handful of families here who are all excited about finding ways to give back together as a group and that is awesome...and underlines one of my main beliefs through all of this..that honestly EVERY little bit makes a difference. So what if our Project Linus month only attracted 4 families. That's 4 blankets made and donated to 4 babies or kids who got a little love from a stranger, right? Through this stage I'm in now where I'm trying to get a bigger thing off the ground, I need to keep reminding myself of that...maybe you can help me with that yes?
Here are a few things that have sent calming vibes through my psyche these last few days:
1) Nathan is an amazing partner. He's not here much right now because he's working on a show but he is so supportive and that means so much to me. He has a way of reminding me of my strengths and helping me make light of my obsessiveness (something I need help with all of the time)...at the same time though, he knows that part of what makes me good at what I do (when I choose to be) is that need to obsess so he doesn't belittle it either.
2) My kids are so funny and sweet and here are a few reasons why:
-Lately Owen says things like "Weed me some books or sumpin'", "I'm doh-in uptairs...izdatokaaay??" and "Wassa big i-deeeah?"
-The other day I was putting Owen down for a nap and he gently put his hands on my cheeks and quietly said "I wuv yohs face"
-Today while we were at the grocery store, I noticed Zoe was whispering something to me. It took me three repeats to hear that she was saying "I have a butt-hole" and then it took me a few more seconds to realize she meant she had a hole in the butt of her pants
-Zoe is getting to be so grown up. More and more often, she is a huge help around the house and with Owen, especially when it's just me and the kids. Tonight, as I was cleaning up from dinner she was upstairs helping Owen try and use the potty. She at one point called down to me to ask if it was alright if she just let him run around naked and I told her to go right ahead. A few seconds later she called down in her "grown up" voice: "Mommy, I hate to ask but...can I get naked?"
-After bath and teeth brushing tonight, I settled into the reading chair and opened my arms to welcome Zoe into my lap for a book. I looked at her and noticed that the buttons on her pj top weren't buttoned and that it was being held closed by a bunch of Scotch Tape. I asked her what happened and she, again in that "grown up" voice, said "Oh, yeah I couldn't get them buttoned so I just taped it."