For me, as a mom of two young children, our cohousing get-togethers act as a social glue that keeps our community together and helps it grow. As a community we are focusing a lot of our time on building the physical community, attending meetings, workshops and making critical decisions during this process, yet we realize we are building much more than buildings: we’re building relationships. Connecting with each other and slowly interweaving our lives as a group is a process that takes time, but it is essential to the long-term health of the whole community. This “glue” is a foundation for us–without it we would not be where we are as a group today.
My family has benefited immensely from having a stable group of people we get to spend time with on a regular basis. As introverts it takes both my partner and I time to open up. It helps to know that this group of people are here to stay and our emotional investment in people will be a lasting one. We value deep and meaningful relationships, which for us is possible through being a consistent presence in each others’ lives.
Our two young kids have had endless opportunities to interact with other cohousing children and adults in a variety of settings. We’ve participated in countless fun outings including celebrating birthdays, camping together, baking bread, picking apples, making apple cider, playing games, and having dinners together. I see all of these experiences as invaluable, because our kids have the opportunity to interact with a diverse population of people, which helps teach them things about the world that their father and I would not be able to do alone.
The community has had our back in other ways besides having fun together. During a difficult time when we were all sick, friends showed up at our doorstep with meals, offered babysitting, and even folded our laundry to help us out. This group has become our family away from family, and I can’t imagine our lives without this group of people.