I grew up playing night games (steal the flag, no bears are out tonight, kick the can), riding bikes, penny-tapping, and general neighborhood terrorizing.
My parents were pretty liberal in allowing me to play within the neighborhood and stay out past dark. But according to my dad, “Nothing good happens after midnight” so we always had to be home before then.
When it was time to come home, I always had fear about the final stretch to my house. My parents never came to pick me up. We just had to be home by a certain time. Sometimes I had a bike. Sometimes I didn’t. But on my street, there were NO street lights. And it was daaaaaark. And we had a sketchy neighbor.
So if my younger brother wasn’t with me (more often than not he was, thankfully), I would ride my bike as fast as humanly possible, or sprint until I jumped through our garage door into the safety of our home.
Sometimes I’d try to talk a friend into walking down my street with me and having their parent come get them at my house (totally self-serving, I know). Or other times I’d call my mom or dad and ask them to come stand in our driveway so I could see them as I came down the dark street.
I hated, hated, hated going down that dark, un-lit street by myself. (Did I mention it was dark?)
I saw this quote and and the more I think about it, the more I love it. It reminds me so much of this experience. I felt safe when someone was WITH me. When someone was “walking me home”.
They weren’t doing the work for me. They weren’t carrying me. They were just WITH me. And just knowing they were there, made me feel safe. Or safER. Sometimes I still felt a little scared, but the fear was so much easier to deal with when I had someone walking with me.
That’s how life is too. It can be scary. And hard. And daaaaaark. And there is a lot of fear. But we’re all here together. WITH each other. And we’re meant to lift each other up, help each other out, side by side, and provide safety for one another whenever possible. We’re not meant to walk alone. In darkness, or light.
Together, we’ve got this.
“We’re all just walking each other home”