Is it an idiomatic expression or does it literally mean 'She got help'?

When Debbie Schammel retired from her job with the Department of Correctional Services after being diagnosed with terminal cancer, she needed someone to plant two flower gardens: one on the east side of the home she shares with her mother, Joy, and the other on the west side of their home. She got it! A friend named Patty Conradt asked Debbie what she could do for her, and Debbie replied, “Weed my garden and plant my flowers.” In the spring of 2016, Patty and over 50 other friends of Debbie’s did exactly that. Patty says, “She’s really well loved by everybody, and they wanted to help.” Debbie’s husband, Rocky, adds about her, “She has a really strong faith, and with that faith her cancer doesn’t bother her quite as much as it does me. I get a little more uptight about it because it is happening to her and not me.”


1 Answer 1


In this context, it appears to be literal: She needed help. She got help.

"He/she got it" can also be an idiom meaning "understood it" or "mastered it". Like, "Bob struggled to understand calculus, but finally he got it." Or in the old movie "My Fair Lady", Professor Higgins is attempting to teach Eliza Doolittle proper English pronunciation, and when she finally pronounces the sentence, "The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain" correctly, he shouts, "I think she's got it! By George she's got it!" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmADMB2utAo But that meaning doesn't seem to apply here.

  • I was trying to answer the question, but I felt like I was going in circles. "He/she got it" could also mean they found something that they were looking for (but clearly not applicable in this context).
    – AIQ
    Nov 2, 2021 at 2:39
  • There is no actual word for it to refer to in the long first sentence. The author wrote "She needed someone...", but then used it as though they thought they had said "She needed help". Nov 2, 2021 at 9:15
  • @KateBunting Well, I think "it" here refers to "someone to plant two flower gardens". Yes, the word "help" does not appear, I shouldn't have said that.
    – Jay
    Nov 2, 2021 at 15:22
  • Well, it does, of course - but we don't normally refer to 'someone' as 'it', which is why I think the author changed their mind! Nov 2, 2021 at 16:37
  • @KateBunting Yes. I think the text is at least a big sloppy. The author said she sought "someone", so logically the next sentence should be, "She got someone!" (or "She got him!" or some such). I think he shifted in his mind from "someone to plant" to "help", but didn't get the words together quite right.
    – Jay
    Nov 2, 2021 at 17:27

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .