I broke my leg on Saturday. I won’t bore you with all the gory details, but let’s just say that the last week has been a tough one for everyone in my family. I’ve had days in the past where I’ve been sick, but I’ve still been able to take care of myself and participate in my family’s life in some way. Since Sunday, I have been completely out of commission. I have been dependent on someone else to get me food, get me dressed and help me shower (I’ve only attempted this twice – it’s quite a production). This “dependent” thing is really getting on my nerves, and given that I’ve been told that I will be on crutches for at least 6 weeks, I’m quite ill prepared for all of this.
But this isn’t about my stupid leg. It’s about the fact that it has dawned on me that I don’t accept or ask for help unless I break my leg. What is up with that?
I know there are many of you out there who are just like me, minus the bum leg. Whether we have a child with ADHD or not, there are those of us who try to do everything ourselves because we seem to think we’re the only person in our lives who is capable of keeping things running. You know what? We’re not the only one, we just think we are. Maybe we’ve been let down before. Maybe we just don’t trust people to pick up the slack. Maybe we think that it’s just as easy to do it ourselves, as it is to explain to someone what we need done. Maybe we think asking for help signifies that we’re weak in some way. Maybe we’re just control freaks.
Whatever the reason, we have to stop doing this to ourselves and to the people in our lives! The people who care about us deserve to be able to step up and help, if we’re willing to let them. I felt weird asking a friend for help the other day and she said, “What if this was me asking you for help? Would you say no or feel put out that I asked you?” Of course, I realized I would do whatever she needed in a heartbeat without any question. So why would it be strange for me to ask someone to do something for me that I would willingly do for them? I still haven’t figured out the answer to the question, but she made me stop and think about the way I view myself and what my role is with others. Without a doubt, I see myself as a giver. Receiving from others just feels weird sometimes. But I’m getting used to it (I even have some sweet friends bringing us dinner tonight). Receiving is just as important as giving. If we only help others and never let anyone help us, that’s not good, just like always receiving and never giving isn’t healthy.
I’m not looking forward to relying on my friends and family for everything over the next 6 weeks, but I am eternally grateful to have people who are there for me. I know this experience is teaching me to let some things go. I sincerely hope you don’t follow my example and wait until you’ve broken your leg to finally allow others to help you.
You deserve all the support that people are willing to give. Just start asking.