If I knocked on your door to borrow a cup of sugar, would you know that I'm your neighbor? Like most Americans, if you live within a few houses of me, I would know you; but further than that, probably not.
I knew I would need the help of many hands when we first moved into our current neighborhood 18 years ago. Raising two special needs boys takes a village!
We had moved from the protection of a townhome community into this wonderful neighborhood with single family houses and big back yards. How would I ever keep track of my boys? I was more than freaked out. I had to create a plan, and quickly!
By the end of that day, I had composed a letter to my new neighbors describing our unique family and the type of help I was looking for. I was nervous about being so open with strangers, but I felt I had no other choice. I even put my phone number on the letter. Armed with freshly-baked cookies, my letter and a smile, I introduced myself to each new neighbor.
I never dreamed they would be so friendly and understanding. It wouldn't be long before I needed to call upon their assistance, which they gladly offered. Within a year or so, we started planning block parties. My neighbor and I were the planners and that first party delighted everyone 17 years ago. We've never missed a year, having two parties each year.
One of the many benefits is that we have a strong sense of community and love. If one neighbor is sick or in need, we rally around and offer support. Just like the photo above, if one hand leaves that photo, the heart isn't complete. We have all become good friends.
Today, more than ever, we are missing each other because of the Covid-19 virus. Our daily physical connection has been temporarily severed. God created us to be connected to each other, to need each other. We have all found ways to stay connected one way or another. But until the day of in-person connection, it will feel like a part of our heart is missing.
Keep calling your neighbors to say hello. Why not be brave and venture out to meet new neighbors? The next time you knock on their door, you won't have to ask, "Do you know me?"
Be sure to check out my many blogs on how to stay hopeful. My book, The Song of My Hope helps you find hope and keep it alive, despite your adversity. God bless you and your neighbors!