Hurricanes and Helpers

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Over the past few months we have seen our neighboring islands experience the full force of nature and its catastrophic effects. We watched the news and were glued to the reports coming out of the islands. When the chips are down you see Caribbean people come together – we become one and this was no exception.

Within 24 hours what happened on our island of Barbados astounded me. Our country went into action. The country was abuzz and there wasn’t a single person who didn’t try to help their fellow person in need. Barbados was spared and we took it as our mandate to now help others – and boy did we ever! As the Fred Rogers saying goes in tragedy, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping”.

Witnessing this avalanche of help, it made me stop and think. In the last months before the end of the year, what help will be needed to close the end of 2017 strong?

For me this year has been quite distinctive. It is usually at this time that I am writing to you about my running plan and updating our BFC community on my injuries and epiphanies. Sorry – not this year! My Achilles injury from last year never really went away and running got put on the back burner. Well not really – it got taken off the stove entirely!

If you have run long distances, you know where I am at. If life has thrown some really big obstacles at you, you know where I am at. If you are a fertility patient, you know where I am at.

When your goals call for you to go the distance and you are not getting where you want to, you know where I am at – the struggle is real.

This weekend the rain was coming down so heavy I couldn’t see my usual view over the valley. It was a tightly woven blanket of grey and wet. The weather matched my mood. I stared through my window holding my cup of coffee. This year has not been absent of tragedy for me. It has

forced me once again to look at myself and define what is important to me. It has forced me to realize that I do not have to try and be in control of everything and ask for help when I need it. The funny thing when you ask for help is that it shifts something inside you. You have to put aside pride. In this space you get to be uncomfortably vulnerable but you also get to be incredibly authentic. When you get real with this side of yourself, you realize that asking for help is not a weakness but can produce pillars of strength both for you and the reciprocal aiding party. Asking for help can in fact open a new path to achieving your dreams instead of stumbling down the beaten trodden path you have been on for so long.

Today, as we are approaching the end of the year, I ask you to pause. Take a moment to see who and what has helped you this year and if there is potentially anything holding you back. In this pause, you may also need to consider the possibility that to help yourself, you need to let go of some things. Things like old thought patterns that need to be abandoned and look to embrace new healthier ones. Perhaps too much time has gone doing the same thing and getting nowhere and it is time to embrace new opportunities. Perhaps you need to reach out to a professional for help in the area of your struggle. Asking for help assists in getting things done that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. It produces new outlooks, ideas and possibilities and many times it can get you to your dreams in a better way than you can alone.

End your year strong. The countdown is on.

– Rachel de Gale

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