Just after Shane’s mom passed away I found myself coming home to a neglected house–as we had spent several days in various hospital waiting rooms–at 4-something am Saturday morning and finally crashing for a couple of hours of sleep. We had recently finished helping with one funeral and I was supposed to take dinner in to a family in our congregation that night. I had not one but several sisters reach out to me and ask if they could help. Friends who genuinely love me. The kind of friends I KNEW meant it when they said they wanted to help. I started typing the response letting them know it would be helpful to me if someone else took over that dinner assignment.
I typed it three times.
And deleted it each time.
And then one of them texted me and said “We are taking care of dinner for so-and-so and will be bringing Sunday dinner to you tomorrow.”
THAT was what I needed. Not to have to ask. Or suggest. Or specify. Just to be able to say, “Thank you. That will be so helpful.”
The thing is, I KNOW BETTER!. I find myself practically begging others to let me help them when I know they need it. “You are blessing others’ lives when you allow them to serve you,” I tell them. Because I know it’s true.
And yet when I find myself needing assistance, I can’t bring myself to ask. Even when people ask “Can I help?” I find myself resorting to evasive maneuvers. But when someone tells me “This is what I’m going to do to help you,” that makes it so much easier. And means the world to me.
I found out today I will be having foot surgery sometime this week. Three weeks on crutches (NO weight-bearing. I’m opting for the little scooter). Then three weeks in a boot.
I’m going to need help. But it will be hard to ask. My brother and sister-in-law want me to fly back out to their home in Portland to take care of me during my recovery. I know they are sincere in their offer. And I know they would completely spoil me. But I also know that’s not very practical or realistic. So I’m going to stay here. And work on articulating what I need. And to ask when I need help. Wish me luck.
Post Edit: I just texted my Visiting Teachers to let them know. If for no other reason than because I know what it feels like to find out a month later after someone I visit teach had surgery or something. I promised myself I would never do that to my VTs. Baby steps!