family week year two

Last year when I arrived in Provincetown (after our 11 hour car
ride) I was a fresh, new Family Pride employee who had only been
with the organization for 6 weeks.  Let’s just say, Family Week is
like trial by fire–it is a constant stream of celebration and
excitement mixed with hauling firewood, chasing kids, and attending
workshops (just to touch on the tip of the iceberg). Above all,
what I looked forward while preparing for this year’s Family Week
was the thought of meeting individual families and having the time
and space to connect directly with the people we work with and for

Needless to say, what excited me most about this year was not
seeing the sights of Commericial Street (although, that did bring
back the memories) or running into the house we stayed in last year
delighted to find I knew where the mugs were, but seeing our
families one year later — because in kid time one year means
quite a bit.

Saturday, registration and the first day here, we went to the beach
for a BYOP (bring your own picnic) gathering.  There were
umbrellas pitched, kids rolling down the sandy hills, and plenty of
sandwich fixings floating around. I walked around to say hi (in
our bright orange t-shirts we are hard to miss) and see what kind
of kid games I could play along the way (you know, “please pretend
you’re a monster and chase me” or “run in and out of the water
really super fast”).  After circling the beach, Dustin and I were
sitting in the sand watching the families play and one child I
recognized from last year walked by me with his parent.  I didn’t
remember his name right away (it was Michael, don’t worry, I
asked), but we chatted about Family Week, how much fun it is to be
in a safe space, and what they were looking forward to this year
(let’s face it–there is a lot to choose from). 

Now everytime I see that family there is a huge smile and a wave
even if we are on opposite sides of the street.  I’ve decided that
this is what Family Week is all about (the spirit of Family Week if
you will); building community, connections,and a place where, once
a year, we can all come back together yet again.