no more heroic act


{image is a photo of Brooke walking down the sidewalk in a pink satin superhero cape with the letter S emblazoned on it in green.

Overlayed text reads “There is no more heroic act than asking for help when we need it.}

Oh my sweet friend,

I know that look. I’ve seen it before. I’ve seen it in your eyes — and I’ve seen it reflected back at me in the glass above my sink.

Please hear me, won’t you?

As counterintuitive as it may seem, there is no more heroic act than asking for help when we need it , nothing more human than reaching out when the burden is too great.

As beautiful as life may be, it’s also hard. It’s ugly, scary, messy HARD. It’s complicated and it’s sticky and it’s overwhelming and, let’s be honest, it’s God damned, bloody exhausting. For a million different reasons at a million different times, it can feel impossible to carry on.

It’s not.

You hear me?

It’s not impossible.

But it’s also not meant to be done alone.

Life is a team sport, kid.

We ALL need help sometimes.

But there’s only one way to get it.

To ask.

And sometimes to ask again and then again and then again still until we get what we need.

Because there ain’t no cavalry.

And that knight in shining armor galloping through town on his white horse to save the day?

Not so much.

But there is help out there. No matter how hard it might be to find, no matter how much work it may take to get to it, it’s out there.

But we’ll never find it when we are so afraid of showing weakness that we shove our need in the closet and stuff our desperation behind the couch and pray, pray, pray that no one will know that we feel like it’s all falling apart around us.

Needing help is not weakness. It’s humanity.

We all visit fear.

We all worry about being found out – being exposed as the imperfect beings that we are.

But fear is not a home.

Not for us, and not for those who need us whole and healthy, rested, present, and nourished.

So stop hiding.

Please, I’m begging.

Stop pretending you’re okay when you’re not.

Be a hero to the people you love and the people who love you …

Ask for help when it’s too much.

And keep asking until you get it.


For you.

And for them.

Love you.


14 thoughts on “no more heroic act

  1. Well said, Jess! This was a most important message to convey!
    No one person can be the tower of strength all the time.

    Love you,

  2. Thanks for that. Having a child with autism is hard enough, just because a lot of people don’t even want to hear it, so you do it yourself, so when that child also has a life threatening disease, it’s just too much. Sometimes it’s easier to get help from strangers then family members. So it really is hard to ask for help, but I’m getting better, I still try to be super mom daily, but some of those strangers have become some of my best friends and are considered family so it’s not so so hard anymore. Thanks for the reminder Jess.

  3. Thank you for this. Just discovered your blog while searching for online communities where I can find advice, commiseration, maybe a little solidarity and validation. I am having a hard time of it this last week or so.

    My son just turned 2 in February. He’s been identified as developmentally delayed and at-risk for autism, via the M-CHAT, and has been recieving state-funded speech therapy once a week for the last year. I had been hoping, I guess, that he just needed a little extra help. Now he’s still pre-verbal (we’re trying PECS after sign language didn’t take) and they’re asking me to get him evaluated for autism. If I am honest with myself, I have thought he’s probably on the spectrum since he stopped making eye contact around 6 months old.

    I guess I haven’t been honest with myself, though, because this acceptance bit has been rough. I feel guilty, because I know it’s not such a terrible thing to be autistic–it’s just a different thing. I just don’t know how to relate to anyone I know, or how to find those to whom I can relate. I don’t know what’s best for my son. I don’t know much right now.

    I’m sorry for the rambles. I suppose the epitome of reaching out is grasping, and this post speaks to me.

    • Oh, honey, you’re in the right place. Stick around, k? If you haven’t yet, read “Welcome to the Club” – it’s in the “If you’re new around these parts” section over there. And then read the post at the end of it, called D Day. Promise, okay? You’re not alone. And neither is your kiddo. Oh, and if you’re on Facebook, come find us there. xo

  4. Hi Jess! Sorry to hijack the comments with an of topic question but I haven’t been able to find a way to send you a message. I have been asked by our school corporation to speak to a group of doctors from IU (Indiana University) School of Medicine that are starting an early diagnosis and intervention center in our area! I am both excited and thinking Holy Cow, what have I gotten myself into?!?! I couldn’t be happier that they are asking to hear from a parent and after reading your facebook post today about Dday I was wondering if you would share your thoughts on what we want doctors to hear from us? Thanks so much! And thank you always for sharing your family!

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