“You can do it. I’ll help.”

She leaned up to the table with determination and pushed even more weight against the little airplane.

Her thumb pressed hard on the red button of the Halloween toy, but the propellor still didn’t move.

“I can’t… do it,” she murmured, concentrating.

Her brother slid the plane in his direction.

“You can do it, Brenna,” he said. “Here. I’ll help you.”

Connor lightly placed his forefinger on top of the red button.

“Now push down,” he instructed her.

Brenna pushed Connor’s finger, and Connor pushed the red button, and the airplane propellor jumped to life, spinning around and around to Brenna’s great delight.

A few days later, Brenna had practiced enough to figure out how to get that airplane propellor moving without any assistance.

“I did it myself!” she exclaimed, holding it tightly with her thumb pressed on that red button.

The weakness in Brenna’s fingers, caused by her arthritis in her hands and feet, is occasionally a little limiting. But Connor didn’t take over for her. He didn’t make the propellor move himself and shield her from the challenge. He didn’t tell her she wasn’t strong enough.

He simply modified the activity so that she could accomplish what she wanted to, and in effect, gave her the confidence to keep trying.  Sometimes, all it takes is one person saying “you can do it” when you think you can’t.

Sometimes, all we need is one little boost from another person – not doing it FOR us, but doing it WITH us – to achieve what we set out to do.

Perhaps the best kind of hero doesn’t arrive on the scene to take over the plane….but instead, shows us that we can fly all by ourselves.

8 thoughts on ““You can do it. I’ll help.”

  • December 2, 2015 at 5:13 pm
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    Connor you are truly a remarkable little boy and one awesome “Big Brother.” I wish that every little girl could have an awesome big brother like you for you are truly one in a million. You my dear sweet boy are wise beyond your years by empowering Brenna with the knowledge that just like the little engine that could she to has the power within to proudly proclaim, I knew I could, I knew I could.
    Thank you Connor for having the wisdom & knowledge to empower Brenna with the I can do it by myself attitude.

  • December 2, 2015 at 5:57 pm
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    Connor is a very special big brother – you must be very proud of him

  • December 2, 2015 at 8:57 pm
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    Brenna you are so lucky to have such an awesome brother. You can do anything you set your mind to beautiful. Thank you mom and dad for sharing your beautiful daughter and awesome son with all of us.

  • December 3, 2015 at 6:41 am
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    What an amazing brother he is, we need to see more compassion in this world and he is a great example!

  • December 3, 2015 at 8:41 am
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    sweet boy <3

  • December 3, 2015 at 9:10 am
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    This post makes me tear up with so much joy and I have never even met the kids. What a wise loving little boy Connor is, as is Brenna just as charming. Your family should be so proud, as you all have been raised so well that you are also raising such compassionate, kind, loving, polite children just like yourselves. What a wonderful legacy to be passing on. If the world could be like your family, this world would be a wonderful place to live.

  • December 5, 2015 at 2:38 pm
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    Out of the mouths (and hands) of babes. What a powerful lesson. Brought me to tears. And he’ll make a great physical or occupational therapist some day. ?

  • March 13, 2016 at 7:26 pm
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    Such an amazing big brother! Brenna is lucky to have him! Children like yours make me optimistic for our future. Thanks for sharing!

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