It’s been said it takes a village to raise a child. It also takes a village to raise an adult. We are all constantly growing, changing, evolving, doing, seeing, recalibrating. We become different people at different points in our lives, entering each stage with all the newness of a baby. We’ve never been parents, spouses, business owners, bill payers, owners of lawns, or responsible tax paying citizens before. We need help from other people constantly.
The difference, of course, with being an adult is that we can ask for help. We can get advice. We can google “how to form an LLC” or “how to start a lawn mower” and go from there. Why then do we not help each other out more? Are we embarrassed? Do we think it will make us look stupid or not cultured if we ask? Is it that we make ourselves feel this way or that other people make us feel that way? Can someone else make you feel stupid or is that just you making yourself feel that way?
All of those are interesting questions. I will not attempt to answer any of them.
What I do know is this: I need help. Lots of help. I’m willing, ready, and able to help anyone out with anything they need. I’m pretty sure if you know me, you know this about me. I like to help. What you may not know is that I need help, too. So I’m just going to ask stuff right now that I need to know or need help with – and if you can help, let me know.
– How in the world do a raise a pre-teen girl and keep my sanity? Is this possible? Do you lose your sanity for a while during this process? Does it come back?
– When you love someone and want to socialize, but their kids are nightmares who your kids don’t like, what do you do?
– Why is there always pee on women’s toilets in public restrooms? Why don’t you just sit down?
– You do know that 99.9% of “reality” TV is scripted, right?
– Why are we paying so much for coffee?
– What exactly is in a fruit roll-up?
– Is there a way to cheat at craps? And if so, can you show me?
– I don’t understand fax machines. I never did. I know no one uses them anymore, but still. I don’t get it.
– Why do we let people vote and go to war when they are 18, but not let them have a beer?
The other thing about helping people comes from being honest with each other. I had a couple conversations the other night that made me have a complete revelation about my life and the lives of others.
- If you knew the moment you were having was a significant event in your life, would you treat that moment differently?
- Everyone I know in the entire world is going through something.
So, here I go. This is me being completely honest with you about my life. I won’t judge you for your moments, so don’t judge me for mine. I wonder if I never went through all of this stuff, would I still be me? Maybe I went through this stuff to help you deal with your crap. Who knows?
- I never fit in anywhere. I was incredibly shy (and still am -shocker). It’s only been the last few years that I decided I didn’t want to be shy around people anymore and felt comfortable enough around people to talk and share a part of myself. My kids are pretty shy and I needed to set a good example for them about reaching out to others. I didn’t want them to feel lonely when great people are all around them. My life is not about me feeling comfortable – it’s about making others comfortable in my presence. And I hope people do, because I pretty much like everyone.
- The first couple years of college I was anorexic and it was the worst time in my life. At that time I had some huge life events all happen at once, I didn’t have any friends, had severe acne, and the only thing I could control was what I ate. And so I controlled it. And the less I ate, the more in control I felt. Amazingly, I still had good grades and could function okay. Until the day I broke down and told dad I needed a break. He came and packed me up, withdrew me from school, and we decided to get certified SCUBA diving. And we did. We’ve never talked about that day and never needed to talk about it. I’ve never had that particular problem again.
- I wasn’t supposed to be able to have children. I had endometriosis and it sucked. Surprisingly, I had no trouble with Katelynn – one month of fertility drugs and BAM…I was knocked up. Hayes took an excruciating 3 years of giving myself shots in my belly, fertility shots, tests, etc…Nothing. I gave up. I told God if he wanted me to have another, fine. If not, I’d be okay. Four months later, I was pregnant with him.
There is so much more. I am far from a perfect individual. We all have our life events and problems and crap to deal with. My life is not perfect and neither is yours. We’re all just people trying to figure this out. We tend to think other people have it all and that they couldn’t possibly understand what you’re going through. That’s just a bunch of bullshit.
Be real. Be honest. Be yourself. Reach out. Laugh. Cry. Help. Be vulnerable. Live your life. Do good things. Make good decisions. Share. Smile. Love.
I need my village.
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