"I hugged my boy a bit tighter this morning; thanking him. He did; in a way birth me into motherhood. Into this secret club of ladies who have it all. And by all; I mean this ability to bring the most intense, intimate, bonded, nourishing kind of love to the world. It starts with our children, but that love spreads far and wide, even to those we never imagined loving. Last night was invigorating and filled our souls to the brim. We shared our favorite nursing stories, and talked about the expansion of who we've become; because of motherhood. We passed delectable food around the most beautiful table. We celebrated ourselves and each other through laughs and wine and kind words. This journey is all our own. And however we get there is all our own. But damn, to have a village; to have women surround you with that fiery, unconditional love; just makes this adventure that much more beautiful."
-CASSANDRA CLEVELAND, OH
"We gathered around a table full of yummy food, tasty beverages and even better conversation. Today we gathered as a village of mamas, free of fear, free of judgement and just full of love. What made today special was not the pretty flowers, yummy food, or beautiful china, but what brought all those beautiful details together - our village. My lovely friend, @rivired lending us her grandmothers china that she saved for being a secretary and ordered a piece from a catalog each time she received a pay check; my mother sending me the crocheted table cloth her mother hand made; my other lovely friend @tatalienarski baking some super yummy muffins even though she's in school full time along with being an amazing mama; the endless texts to ask opinions on the details, what about this and what about that; Rivi baking the best quiches; and all of the mamas being willing to be vulnerable and gather with other mamas they didn't necessarily know. There's that saying that we are more connected than ever yet lonelier than ever. Today we broke that mold. We laughed, we cried, we hugged, we laughed some more and we connected as mamas, as women, and as a community. I sat there and my heart was full. I found my village."
-KAT IN AUSTIN, TX
"This past weekend I had the privilege of attending a village gathering in Austin, tx. as mothers we came together, told our stories, laughed, cried, ate and most importantly connected as women, mothers, a community, and as a village. thank you @katpatx for hosting such an inspirational event on behalf of the @thevillagemagazine"
-RUQIYA IN AUSTIN, TX