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Updated: May 26, 2022

My dear friend and author Janice Fialka offers this guest column today. Janice is a parent, poet, a compelling storyteller, and an award-winning advocate for families and persons with disabilities. You can see more about her books and work by clicking HERE. Janice writes;

For just today, give yourself permission to ask for help! Maybe it’s in the kitchen, or at work, on a nature walk, caring for your children, needing a 5 minute pep talk from a friend. And not just ask for help---but celebrate the “bold” move to invite someone into your life, to share a moment of connection. Whisper or sing out, “Yay me! I asked for help.” For too long, we’ve swallowed the “gotta do it myself” pill. Why? Why do we value independence when we know it really doesn’t exist? My son, Micah who has an intellectual disability has taught me the value of asking for help, not with apology, but with dignity and intention. I have been humbled many times when I have witnessed Micah accomplish something that didn’t seem within his grasp. When I’ve asked him, “Micah, how did you do that?”, I can almost hear his eyes rolling, “Mom, I just asked for help.” Yup!

When we invite support from others --- we are telling them that they are needed, that they matter, that your community would not be the same without them. I want to live in a world where help is asked for and given freely without guilt, pity or scorekeeping. But with a generosity of spirit that comes with the knowledge that we need each other --- that no one is really on their own.

Pick one of these two quotes to whisper to yourself throughout the day. Let the words of wisdom remind you that asking for help is our superpower!

“To hell with bootstraps, for surely we need to swoop in on most days and save each other.”

-L.R. Berger

At the deepest level, there is no giver, there is no gift, and no recipient . . . it is only the universe rearranging itself. –Jon Kabat-Zinn

Or just sing the Beatles song, “Help. I need somebody.” ---- because we do!

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