Friday, February 11, 2011

Give Me A Break

The definition of ‘help’ in my dictionary is probably ‘complete failure.’ By no means do I think that’s an accurate statement for real life, but that is often what it feels like - taking on ‘too’ much (aka a normal amount or what I want to take on), getting sick, and asking to be rescued - it feels like failing time and time again. And so often, many of us fight on despite our breaking bodies.

This past summer before my surgery, when babysitting three one-year olds, I would often take them to the park. Individually, each child didn’t weigh that much - but put them all together in a triple stroller (which, by the way, is very hard to push and maneuver) and pack it up with snacks and bottles and blankets and more, and you get a pretty heavy load - very cute - but very heavy. I would do this several times a week, and worse, we made our way up a massive hill each time to get to the playground or library. I would often have worsening pain on the journeys, and many times contemplated running over to a nearby house, demanding someone watch the babies and then the use of their bathroom. In reality, I should I have stayed in with the babies, but in the moment, nothing was going to get in my way.

Which brings me to now. I - 6 months plus one day from my ostomy surgery - need to start asking for a help. Between Crohn’s and possible other issues re-surging and rendering me to wave my metaphorical white flag, it is hard to carry on with what I need to do. Truth: I could make myself do things. Truth: That would make me more sick. Truth: I need to ask for help.

The actual definition of help: to improve a situation or problem, be of benefit. The actual definition of failure: lack of success. Asking for help is like being vulnerable - only a strong person can admit they aren’t that strong and have weaknesses, it doesn’t make them a bad person, it makes them honest and sincere.

Perhaps I find it so hard to ask for help because I don’t want to be a burden to my friends, or that annoying kid that complains at excess - or that I don’t want to really admit how ill I am. Everyone with IBD wants to live their life, not their life with IBD, and I am no exception. But, against my own judgment, asking for help doesn’t mean not living your life, it means the exact opposite - doing what you can for yourself, and asking others to ‘fill in the blanks’. It’s not taking a pass, it’s taking a step at reclaiming your life, health, and sanity.

I’ll take a cue from The Beatles and ask for help, and then soon, I will be able to offer my help to someone else in need.


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