This past weekend, my family and I went camping. As most May long weekends, the weather wasn’t fantastic. Thankfully, we enjoyed a day and a half of good weather before it turned really cold and rainy. We woke up Sunday morning to rain, and the forecast wasn’t looking any better, so after breakfast and a few games, we decided to pack up. My husband went outside in the rain, to start packing up out there, and I packed the inside of the camper while trying to keep the kids happy despite being confined to a small space. Once we did everything we could before being able to start folding down our tent trailer, we brought the boys into the van so they would stay warm and dry. Then the fun began outside in the pouring rain (for me anyways, my husband was already soaked). Just a few minutes after we started folding down the camper, our campground neighbour from across the street came over. He was outfitted in his rain jacket and simply asked “How can I help?”, but it was really more of a statement. At first, I felt bad accepting his help; he could be nice and warm and dry in his own camper! I told him that we were just packing up because attempting to stay with the forecast they were calling for seemed like the worst idea with 4 small boys that can’t be easily entertained inside the camper! He told me that he remembered the days of packing up in the rain with a pop up when his 3 girls were small – they were now all teenagers and could read a book, play games, etc. when rainy days came along during a camping trip – so he was more than happy to help. He then proceeded to help us pack up, right up until our camper was hooked up to the hitch and we were ready to drive off! What a kind, empathetic man!
As I thought back and reflected on this man’s kindness, I could easily relate it to education. We are constantly wanting to move from our point A to our point B, which is different for everyone. Just think for a minute that maybe someone needs your help because you’ve already been in their shoes and know how to help them get to their next point. Maybe you can share how you’ve taken a similar risk and were also very afraid and excited all at the same time. Maybe you are the push and support they need! Maybe someone just needs an ear, or a shoulder to lean on! Or maybe you can look up to someone and have them guide and support you in your growth. I’ve seriously met so many amazing educators who are always willing to help me and I feel so blessed to have this amazing community who surrounds me!
No matter where you are in your learning journey, you can likely be both a “helper” and a “helpee”! Accept the help when it is offered to you, don’t hesitate to ask for help and don’t forget to offer it yourself, too (and maybe try stating that you’re helping instead of just offering)! 🙂