I heard the words “You are not alone” many years ago when I first began my journey of recovery, and it took some time for me to really get the meaning of these words.

So where am I going with this you might ask? Well, as I sat in front of my computer, a day late posting my blog, I asked for guidance as to what to write, what needs to be shared, and maybe what needs to be heard?

I have come to the awareness (a clearer awareness) of how songs had been such an important part of my young life. I had always resonated with songs, even though I didn’t always understand their meaning, I felt them in my soul.

The song “Lean On Me” by Bill Withers was a favorite of mine. I remember while at summer camp sitting around the campfire offering to sing Lean On Me. I didn’t know all of the verses, but what I did know was well received, and from that time on I was asked to sing this song throughout the week of camp.

I recognize, and I am grateful for the wonderful feeling I get when I spend time with friends sharing the joys and the sorrows.

Perhaps there was a part of me that wanted someone to lean on, someone to ask me to call them. I so needed a friend, for I was carrying such a big load at such a young age and didn’t know what to do or how to ask for help. Asking for help has been one of the hardest things for me to do. Although with time, it has become a bit easier.

The other day I was walking with a wonderful, courageous, caring, and wise friend. One of the topics on this weekly walk of ours was asking for help. I like to think I am better at it, but it depends on what kind of help I’m asking for.

As we walked and talked and listened, I said to her, “You know how you are able to communicate certain things so clearly by using metaphors?” She smiled and nodded. I then shared my metaphor of what it might look like when we need help and our friends are standing by waiting to be asked.

I shared that for me it could look like my car windshield being so dirty that it’s difficult to see where I’m going, and a friend is standing next to my car with windshield cleaner and rag ready to clean it for me—but I don’t ask.

I believe that somehow I can reach around with my arm to clean it myself. This could work, but wouldn’t it be easier if I would just ask my friend who is standing ready to help? We laughed and realized that we both do this, still.

We are not alone. We don’t have to carry our burdens, challenges, or whatever it is that we may call the “tough situations” we may be walking through. We can ask for help. I recognize, and I am grateful for the wonderful feeling I get when I spend time with friends sharing the joys and the sorrows, as both of us walk away with a nourished soul.