“Help! I need somebody
Help! Not just anybody
Help! You know I need someone
~ John Lennon / Paul Mccartney
Watching the woman struggle with what was obviously too many items, I wondered if I should get a cart for her. The voice in my head argued with me, “No, she is an adult and can figure this out for herself,” but the helper inside of me was having a hard time not jumping to the rescue. Before long, I asked, and the answer came, “No, I got it!” Clearly, she needed help, but I walked away. Asking for help, admitting we could use another pair of hands, is not easy for many people. Often, I look at the 2-man saw my father once had, and I think of how ridiculous it would be to grab that saw and not ask someone to help. As Lennon and McCartney recognized, there comes a time we need to admit that we need someone to help.
Maybe it’s the thought that someone will think I’m not Superwoman, but asking for help is one of the most difficult things I’ve found to do. What about you? If I offer to help you, I mean it. People ask for help with their computers frequently or ask me to take photos (which I’ve learned to treat as more of a business), and I am happy they think so much of my abilities. Why don’t I pay others that compliment by offering them the opportunity to share their talents? The truth is, I’d rather not inconvenience anyone, and I’m not alone.
Help me if you can, I’m feeling down
And I do appreciate you being ’round
Help me get my feet back on the ground
Won’t you please, please help me?
When we are feeling down is when we need to ask for help, yet that is one of the times we find it most difficult. When it’s been a kind of wild day, we might say, “The struggle is real,” but it isn’t really the same as the struggle for the person who has night terrors because of childhood trauma, or the person who worries about how to pay the bills and not let their kids down about going on the field trip at school, or the person who knows something just isn’t right with their health but thinks if they don’t tell anyone the problem might go away. These struggles are very real, and while reaching out for help doesn’t mean the problems will be magically fixed, it does mean that for a few minutes the person suffering isn’t alone. Maybe they just need to get their feet back on the ground. If you are the one struggling, you’re going to have to be brave.
(Now) And now my life has changed (My life has changed) in oh so many ways
(My independence) My independence seems to vanish in the haze
Independence. It was all ours when we were in those in-between years — you know, at one point you are too young to be as independent as you’d like and at some point, you are unable to be as independent because of aging issues. We have two women in our lives who are in their golden years (golden years are considered to be advanced years and what I’ve always pictured as the best of times). Both women are pretty fiercely independent, but both have had to recognize that their lives have changed in oh so many ways. It’s been over twelve years since my mother moved to live in a place that would allow her independence but not require her to do home repair. It was a gift to me, actually, and I am more appreciative of that today than ever. It’s been a few years since my husband’s (my) aunt did the same. If you are in a position to make your life and that of your children a little easier, do it. Recognize that by allowing people to help, you can actually remain independent longer.
Maybe I’ll sing The Beatles’ song a little more and someone will hear it and think they should offer to help. I think that might be a good plan. I suppose I could bring the two-man saw into the yard and see if anyone stops. It’s not an easy thing, but it is good for the helper and the helped when opportunities arise. Help someone and see how good it feels. Ask for help, and let someone feel needed. It’s a balance, and that is what life requires every single day.