Feeling like part of a community is an important piece of identity. We all need to feel like we belong. I am member of several communities; some I sought out, while others I just became a part of due to geography or shared circumstances. All are a part of who I am.
Likewise, I want my children to feel like they belong to various communities. We live in a fairly small town, so they are likely to grow up with a core group of people whom they will have known their whole lives. Some will be close friends, others will be merely recognizable because they have seen them at the same coffee shop year in and year out. Many people will be somewhere in between. They both will also belong to communities of people sharing their love of a particular sport, past time, or interest, and these communities will extend beyond the borders of their town.
I hope that being a part of these different communities will give Belalu a strong sense of identity. It is easier to face challenges in the world when you know you have a stable base of love and support always behind you.
When she was born, the local yarn store in town honored her arrival with a beautiful window display. These are the kind of people she will be surrounded by. This is the welcoming love she will grow up knowing.