This past Saturday I went grocery shopping with D2 in tow. He was restless and trying to escape from the cart’s child safety belt as the checkout clerk loaded our cart up with bags. Observing that I clearly had my hands full, the bag boy asked me if I needed any help out to my car. I told him, “No, thanks. I got it.”Just the other night, I was putting D2 down for bed with our normal routine of a bottle and story in our favorite rocking chair. Now getting this child to sleep every night requires the patience of Job. That night I had a lot of work I still needed to do and I was stressed about how long it would take to get my munchkin to bed. Dr. D. came in and asked me if I wanted him to put D2 to bed. I told him it was fine and that I’d just go ahead and do it. “You sure?” he asked. “Yeah, I got it.” See a pattern here?
As busy moms with demanding jobs we often talk about how we are starved for time. More help is always at the top of our wish list. So when it’s offered, why do we turn it down? Is it because we are such control freaks that we don’t think anyone can help us? Is it because we worry that we’ll lose our Super Woman status if we dare ask for or accept help? I know for me (and an unscientific poll of my girlfriends reveals a similar truth) I often think it’s “easier” to just take care of something myself than to ask for help. I don’t know where this attitude comes from. Maybe it’s from being the oldest of three children and being used to shouldering a lot of responsibility. Maybe it’s because I secretly believe that if something is easy, I haven’t earned it. Then I think about all of the things I might have done (or NOT had to do) if I wasn’t so damn stubborn and insistent on doing everything myself.
Here’s what I know for sure: there are no brownie points in the Game of Life for taking the hard way. Help is a gift and there is no shame in taking the path of least resistance to get what you need done. I think every mom deserves her own Easy Button but in the absence of that a good old-fashioned helping hand will do just fine. Next time you find yourself saying “No thanks” to an offer of help, stop and ask yourself if you are turning away a gift that could change your life – or at least make your day.
Do you have a hard time accepting or asking for help?