Monday, December 23, 2013

Asking for help

It frustrated me when my mother would worry about “being a burden”. If we correctly anticipated ways she might need us, she would allow us to help, usually while assuring us we “didn’t have to” or worrying that we were neglecting our own families in favor of her. If we were not perceptive enough to predict when she would need us, she almost never asked. We tried to convince her that it was a joy and honor to help the woman who nurtured us through childhood, because truthfully, it was.  I feel truly blessed to have been able to give my meager support in the last years of her life.

I’m thinking of this because I need help and I don’t like it. I can’t drive because the splint goes over my elbow. I can do many things one handed, but more slowly and awkwardly. I can’t carry the laundry basket downstairs, nor get myself to the salon for a haircut, nor cut and clean the squash for soup, nor scrub the shower. I feel like a burden. I hate asking for help and don’t do it often.

My limitations are temporary. In a week I’ll get a new cast that will probably give me more freedom; and a month after that I should be free of a cast altogether. In the meantime, I need to practice asking for help, remembering how good it felt to help Mom.

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