Recently I had a deep and meaningful conversation with a friend of mine. I opened up about how difficult this past year has been as a single mom building a business I’m passionate about while trying to rebuild my life after loss. Her response truly caught me off guard. She said she had no idea I was struggling because when she looks at me she sees someone who has it all together. She said she assumed I had all the help I needed since my family lived in the area. This was news to me, as I thought it was pretty obvious I was a hot mess because that’s exactly how I felt on the inside.
This feeling of not always having it together caused me to lash out at the people closest to me, frustrated they didn’t see my pain or know how to help me. After the conversation with my friend, I thought maybe if they saw me the way she did, then they, too, had no idea I needed help. I’ve learned over the past five years about how important asking for help can be, yet I honestly still find it to be a humbling experience. It forces me to surrender my pride, relinquish control, and be specific and decisive on what exactly I need help with.
The past few months have truly brought me to my knees. The pressure and expectations I put on myself over my TEDx talk, combined with my chest pains and uncertainty surrounding my health at the time, complied with the daily challenges of being a single mom, financial stress, and building my speaking business created the perfect storm all at once to bring me to a place where I had no choice but to STOP, pray, and seek help. I finally expressed to my parents the gravity of what I was going through. I told them how I’ve been living anxiously while moving in and out of pure chaos, both inwardly and outwardly, over the past year. They quickly moved into action to help me find support.
I know it’s a cliché, but life really is a journey filled with ups, downs, twists, and turns. It’s becoming clear to me I need some serious help with how to navigate being a single mom. Until a couple of years ago, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, until out of tragedy I stumbled into writing and speaking, neither of which I thought I could make me a sustainable living. Most days feel like an uphill battle facing many situations I consider to be my weaknesses, but must get done. Every day I feel both inspired by my late husband, Andrew’s, life and saddened by his absence and the void it’s left in our family. Life is hard, but there’s one thing I know for sure: no one succeeds alone, so getting help to navigate this journey is what’s working for me right now.
Maybe, like me, you’re facing some challenges and could use support. I’m here to tell you it’s OK to ask for help. Perhaps you want to get your work or home life more organized, so you download an audiobook on the topic and listen to it a little bit every week day on your drive home from dropping off the kids at school. Or maybe you want to reach a certain level of success in your career, so you treat someone to lunch who’s reached that level in order to learn what they’ve done to get there. It could be you want to grow spiritually so you ask someone who’s faith and life you respect to be your mentor. Or maybe like me you seek therapy to help you navigate your everyday life as a single mom. Whatever it is for you, don’t be afraid to ask for the support you need. No one succeeds alone.
Thank you for spending your valuable time with me today! Love and Blessings.
PS – Excited to be back on the road speaking in Minnesota this Saturday at Spirit of Life Bible Church! Then on Sunday I’m so honored to be speaking at a banquet for my former club gymnastics team, Achievers!
PPS – Need an extra dose of Courage? Check out my TEDx talk: https://youtu.be/f2icabWsRgk
PPPS – I had no idea when I published The Ellie Project back in 2015 how much of an impact this book Andrew wrote and illustrated for our then two-year-old daughter, Ellie, in the final months of his life would have on families all over the country. It’s sold over 6,000 plus copies, and continues to leave a lasting impression on the hearts of those who read it. Get your signed copy here.