The Big 3
There was someone very wise that once told me that there will come a day, when things get rough in life and I call on people to provide me with support, I will encounter the BIG 3. The BIG 3 essentially being the three different types of people you have surrounding you when you are in need. We all have things that happen in our life that are difficult. We all NEED people. We stroll through different facets of our life, glimpses of the great and periods of the downright awful. Understanding that sometimes, life becomes more than we can handle and grief or reflection of events force us to call on our people. The difficulty in what transpires after the event, is the belief that some people in our lives were held to a standard that they just simply cannot be held to. Have you looked outside your standard circle to find the kind of people who will elevate you and make you better? If not, it’s worth a look!
The first person being your most intimate of groups- the ones who are there to support you and pick you up at every turn. Our biggest cheerleaders! The ones who without question will give their time, their listening ear or even financial support to help you through the time without any questions asked. It is these people, who renew your sense of courage and tear down your walls of fear. You may assume this would be your family and friends you have known for a lifetime. Think again! It may not and often times when we start to expect from someone to do as we would, we are left with a disappointment in our souls that can destroy relationships and doubt our hearts. It is within this group of people, however, you are able to continue to make goals and reach them. This is the group that will see you through your struggles and be there at the finish line when you succeed. These folks are your lifeline!
The second type of person being the person who believes in your situation and shows empathy on the surface and will help you one time. They want you to know they think what is happening is valid and more importantly, that you see them as someone in your life that can be counted on. They acknowledge your situation as one to be recognized and believe that they are “doing the right thing”. It is in these people that you celebrate friendships and are often left speechless because of their generosity in believing in not just your mission, but your sense of worth.
Finally, the third type of person. This person watches you suffer from a distance. They may or may not let you know that they are being understanding of what is happening in your life. They will often scroll through posts, ignore texts or even decide that what is going on really isn’t that important. This could be a family member, thought to be best friend, colleague or even someone who you thought you really knew. It may take minutes for you ro recognize this person or it may take years of them ignoring the situation. It’s the person that doesn’t have it in them to put themselves in your shoes, prioritize their commitments or show the strength to be there for you when you need it. This type of person can disappoint you and make you question the relationship that you thought you had. At the end of the day however, you may recognize that the earlier you realize that someone is a number 3, the faster you can build upon people who fall into 1 or 2 to feel whole.
At the end of the day, we all get to decide what kind of person we want to be, what kind of friend we want to be. Sometimes we think we know someone and it isn’t until we ask of them and they aren’t able to show up in the way we need them to, we are able to move past what we thought we had with them and begin to have faith that empathy just isn’t in their deck of cards. Sometimes strangers will surprise us and make us reimagine what we thought was our circle and open our hearts to people who show up. Because at the end of the day, showing up is always what counts. Allow people in and you may be surprised at who knocks on your door.
Kelly Gallagher is a Philadelphia native and holds a master’s degree in Special Education. Recently named the recipient of a KYW women's achievement award, she is passionate about giving back to families who have babies in the NICU. She is a blogger, wife, dynamic philanthropist and has been a full time elementary school teacher for the past 16 years. She is also the mother of four beautiful children - Addyson, Ryan, Connor and Curran.
Kelly founded The Superhero Project Inc in late 2015. This 501c3 organization supports premature babies and their families and started shortly after the premature birth of her twin sons, Connor and Curran, in 2014. Kelly organizes photo sessions, speaks to families and provides them with emotional support needed in a time of crisis. She has donated over $50,000 to hospitals in the Philadelphia area to install Angel Eye Cameras bedside so families can see and interact with their baby 24/7 via a remote and secure feed.
Kelly has allowed her experience in the NICU to transform the role of the family unit and help bridge the gap between home and hospital. She continues to be inspired by the many families who don't start their journey to motherhood easily and motivated to help other moms who need support.