Born and Raised
So many East Texans claim this as a badge of honor. I get it. Smaller towns. Community focused with family at it’s core. As a transplant, this can be daunting. First, there’s still the lingo to learn. Second, Texas has a big personality. I mean all East Texans towns are Insider Towns.
In Arkansas, we love Feltner’s Whatta-Burger. This Texas pretender cannot compete.
Seven years a transplant and I still get asked “which high school” I graduated from. I love how connected everyone is, so don’t misunderstand. But there’s an aspect of the Insider Town syndrome that makes me sad. How does everyone live so close to their family?! So many friends have a parent who sees their children around once a week. Our extended family is at least 4-1/2 hours away. It can create a longing for family while everyone else is having their Sunday family dinners.
First, I had to come to terms that the family life many of my friends have won’t be ours. Second, I started creating a closer extended family. My people.
Friends that were ahead of me in the mom game, friends in the thick of it with tiny toddlers and mentor moms. Mentor moms are the saintly women who lift you up and offer the best wisdom. They’ve got grandbabies and offer perspective. Some days you need a momma hug. These mentor moms offer a surrogate momma hug. These become the people you add as your children’s emergency school contacts. They know you’re solo parenting that week, and stop by to check on you. They will politely and bluntly say “I’m taking your people. You need a break.” They become the people known as “aunty” to your children. You plan holidays together.
Y’all! At first, some of these people may feel a bit too much. How can you just casually offer to help friends like this? They love you. Accepting help is the hardest and scariest thing sometimes. But, only after doing this will you see that these “friends” have become your built in local family. Your people.