i was having dinner with a couple of girlfriends the other night. one had recently had a miscarriage. the other is ambivalent about having children. we are all in our mid-30's. i will say in an aside that as i listen to my friends go through issues of marriage, family, trying to get pregnant, etc. i am more and more relieved that i will not be going through any of this. i'm happy to be a supportive listener and cheerleader. the whole night we talked about the miscarriage, friends who are trying to get pregnant, who are having babies and starting families. one friend mentioned a building in brooklyn where all the tenants are trying to get pregnant all at once and networking, sharing. it sounded fascinating!
i thought how all those people could use a community to help them work through all the stuff that comes with family.
in nyc, and my neighborhood especially, there is a baby boom. the population of infants increased in manhattan by 25% between 2000 and 2004! i had the idea of working with parishioners to create an holistic family center at my church. it could cover many areas of family - trying to get pregnant, single moms, new parents, parenting classes, playgroups for all ages, deciding not to get pregnant, activities for parents and teenagers ... it's not sunday school, it's for the whole family. it would be for the whole neighborhood, not just parishioners. i'm excited by the idea and interested to see where it goes.
i hope as a religious to work with children and families, specifically in africa with aids orphans. i definitely think this idea i had yesterday is divinely inspired and matches my vocation of working with kids. i hope to start this in the fall. should be exciting! i'd love to see your comments and ideas on this.