Brenda’s Blog – June 27, 2023
When I was in grade school we gleefully sang about a terrified rabbit who approached a cabin in the woods shouting “Help me, help me, sir, he cried!!” This poor rabbit was running from a hunter who wanted to “shoot him dead.” We raised our hands wildly in rhythm to the refrain as the hare begged for refuge. To this day, I find myself laughingly saying (without hand motions) “help me, help me, sir, she cried!” as a response to a puzzling situation.
In my 40s I went to work as a newly single woman. I was blessed to be employed in a fine firm with an outstanding employer. I soon learned one of his favorite phrases was, “hep the boy!” That meant he needed administrative assistance, a listening ear, or an encouraging word. I learned much “hepping the boy!”
Did you know bikers have a signal for needing help? If you see a bike by the side of the road with a helmet situated behind you know the rider is asking for assistance.
As a grandmother I am particularly attune to items about child safety. One of the key hand gestures every child should know is four fingers raised with the thumb across the palm. When the fingers are then lowered to cover the palm it can be translated HELP ME! Oh, that no young child should ever have to use the gesture, but it is important for them to know.
As I thought about these I considered other ways we ask for help without words. How aware of the person who seems to disappear by withdrawing are we? What about the friend who cannot sleep night after night? And how about the person who drinks too much, eats too much, or shops too much?
Adults don’t have a hand signal or wave their hands saying, “help me, help me,” but the desperation may still be there. Why don’t we pray for sensitivity to the needs of others? Why don’t we ask for eyes and ears to help others?