Mama Jo here, vehemently writing this on behalf of not only myself but several of my friends who I think need to hear this right now.
PLEASE DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP. I don’t care if you’re moving, getting divorced, coming out to your parents, picking your nose, drunk and need a ride…ASK. FOR. HELP.
Certain airplanes should not be flown solo.
I know pride is a thing, a huge thing. It took me way longer than I care to admit to ask for help. All of the signs were there. Dark rooms, no music, no TV, no phone, no sleeping, no eating, nothing…just darkness. It took me crumbling in front of someone I barely knew at the time to realize that I didn’t need anything but help. I wasn’t aware that, “help,” didn’t necessarily mean fixing all of my problems right away or making it better. Help comes in so many forms and it took me a long while to understand that. Sometimes help is dressed as a friend baring gifts of wine and ice cream and random documentaries. Sometimes it looks like strolling down a New Orleans Rue in the late afternoon with friends and Hurricanes. Sometimes it’s a hug or a smile or a pair of eyes crying with you. AND sometimes…help comes in the fashion of tough love.
It’s hard to see things about yourself that you either don’t want to see or don’t know exist, I get that. It’s hard to be responsive when someone is reaching out to you, practically yelling, “I WON’T LET YOU DROWN,” and all you can do it roll your eyes and turn off your phone because drowning seems easier than anything else. By the time you get to this point, your energy is zapped and you’re sick of yourself and all the thoughts you’ve been dealing with. I know it’s embarrassing to admit defeat, but the people in your life that love you and support you will reinforce that it is not defeat, it’s overcoming. Overcoming is a triumphant word in my vocabulary, one that I am happy to use more than ever these days.
I’m glad it took me so long to realize these things because my appreciation for them overflows. I would be in the deepest, darkest hole in the smallest corner of the world if it wasn’t for a friend of my shaking me, physically shaking me and flipping on all of the lights in my room (metaphor, zing!) and shoving a cup of coffee in my face and saying, “alright bitch, enough. we’ve got to get you out of here.” I know that she meant that in every sense of the phrase and I will never be able to thank her enough – she helped me change my life. With that moment followed my eyes really opening and seeing things. I found confidence in my decisions like I never had before, because out of darkness comes a certain light…a light that is strengthening in ways I cannot even begin to explain. You start hearing the people around you and it makes a world of difference, and would you like to know why? They want what is best for your well-being.
We often hear people say, “it doesn’t matter what they think,” and they’re right…but the people who are close to you? That have observed you and applauded you and cried with you? Listen to them. Let them help you. Learn to lean on them and let them love you. It’s going to be overwhelming, but it will change everything when you realize that you have the choice NOT to walk alone.
Don’t fly solo.