What do you need most in trying circumstances?

September 29, 2016


I awakened in the morning and something seemed, amiss but I couldn’t quite figure it out. Still groggy and searching for something wrong, I crept out of bed. Barefoot and still in pajamas, I ran down the stairs towards the noise – that strange noise.

My kids were still fast asleep, and my husband was out of town, so I felt I had to be the brave one.

My feet hit the cold marble floor and to my surprise things went splash. I took another step thinking my mind was playing a trick on me. It took a minute to register that I was standing in ankle deep water. My brain finally registered, this water had no place in the middle of my entryway.

I carefully made my way towards the noise, splashing down with every step. To my dismay, I found water spurting out of the back room toilet. I am no genius when it comes to the household repairs, but I knew something had to be done. I kicked into gear; after all, I was the only adult in the house. With water drenching my pajamas and smacking me in the face, I managed to reach to the shut-off knob and stop the direct flow.

I looked around thinking, “How could this be?” My week had been incredibly painful and now this. This was not how I expected to start my morning off; it was just plain cruel to think I could handle one more thing.

I quickly called the plumber even though it was the wee hours of the morning. I met him at the door with desperation in my eyes. I said with a whine, “What do I do?” One quick look around, and he knew fixing a toilet was the least of my problems.

He had no actual help to give at this point and yet what he gave was so valuable. He was kind, he was patient, and he stayed with me until I got to the next layer of help. He was determined to make me understand that

I was not alone in my messy circumstances.

So many times when someone is hurting or struggling, we feel ill-equipped to help, so we do nothing. I am so guilty of this at times. I think someone else can do it better or knows more.

On that particular day, I did not need my toilet fixed. He could have easily said, “Ma’am this job is not for me, you need to call someone else.”

Instead, he offered his presence until the next layer of help had arrived. Little did he know that I had a storm brewing in my family that was far worse than a toilet overflowing. This almost complete stranger helped me to hang on. His being there helped me not to unravel and get to the next needed step.

Most times just having someone stand with you in your unexpected circumstances is all you need. They don’t have to do much more than let you know,


Do you have a story when someone stayed by your side? I would love to hear about it in the comments.

Please join me next week when I continue my saga of my ankle deep water.  Here is the link: How to Find Peace in Unwanted Circumstances


  1. Reply


    This was a great reminder that we don’t always have to “DO” something to help someone. Just being “present” can be the bridge of hope that we need to get to or through the next “thing”. Thank you for the reminder… Priceless!

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      So true. I know for me in my quest to help I always feel more comfortable if I am actually doing something. Always strange what I like I don’t always do. My desire for help would aways be presences over having something done for me.

  2. Reply


    This was beautiful. Brought tears to my eyes thinking about how that particular person on that difficult day and time in your life was able to do so much for you that he probably to this day has no clue how much of an impact he had on you. Reminds me of not only the people who have been that person in my own life and stood by me through life’s ups and downs but reminds me that I myself can be that person for someone. Hearing that for you it was so simple as the plumber staying with you until the next person arrived makes me think about the people in my own life and people I interact with on a daily basis throughout life. Makes me more aware as to how I can be THAT person for someone else if I slow down in my own life and take the time to just do something simple and let them know I am there for them.

    1. Reply

      Maree Dee

      That is so true he probably never knew how much he helped. Just like most of the time, we never know how much we help others with the little things we do. What I learned is what I think is little just may be huge in another’s life. I know for me it is a constant challenge to slow down and notice those around me. I got a hunch you stop and help quite a few people.

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