Help. Short word. A lot of weight
Updated: Aug 5
Help. Short word. A lot of weight....to me at least. When Dom wants my help with something he points and says, “Uh oh.” A phrase every mom knows is toddler-speak for, “Something ain’t quit right here, lady!” Recently I was in the kitchen when Dom comes running in, eyes wide, points toward his room and goes, “uh oh!”
Me: “What’s up bud?”
Dom: “uh oh”
Me: "ohhh, what’d you do?"
Dom: *grabs my leg to lead me toward his room* "uh oh! Uh oh!"
I get in there and see that my sweet little 18-month-old has thrown an entire box of diapers all over his room. I mean it basically rained diapers! He had made a mess and was requesting my help with the clean up. (Side note: at what point in this diaper party do you think he thought, “Awww shit!!!! Shittt!!! I better get my mom!”)
Help. Short word. Expected from me....to Dom at least.
See, I’m not very good at asking for help. A character flaw I got increasingly good at in the years after my mom died. To me, the one person I truly depended on had left me and every other adult in my life honestly just couldn’t fill her shoes. I don’t blame them (not anymore at least). It’s hard to help someone else when you can’t really see past your own grief. My mom was so many things to so many people, a character flaw of hers I’ve come to find out. I used to think that asking someone for help was just giving them the space to let you down! So if I didn’t ask for help, no one could let me down....read hurt me, leave me, abandon me. So I didn’t. I got really good at figuring things out on my own, only asking for even the slightest bit of help when I truly felt in over my head. Spoiler alert: my "in over my head" tolerance is high AF!
So interesting that we enter this world understanding that help will be given to us. A baby can literally do nothing by itself without the help of a parent. And as we grow and see our pleas for help not answered we begin to look inward. We carry burdens alone. We don’t let people in. For years and years I operated as if there was a help scarcity. Looking back, it was meeting my husband that started to break my cycle of not asking for help. He made it clear that this “not asking for help” and not letting him in wasn’t going to work for him. I bet he wishes he could take that back now because my water bottle always seems to be in a room far away from where I’ve decided to sit and I’m just. So. Thirsty 🤪 He understood and respected where I was coming from, but was determined to get me to let my walls down a bit Spoiler Alert #2: I did. And now I’ll be asking his ass for help from the grave....suckaaaa!
Wherever you are in this Motherless Mom journey don’t forget to accept help from those that are offering it to you. Now is not the time to use not accepting help as a show of strength. It will only burn you out. It will be uncomfortable but you’ve gotta do it. For yourself and for your baby.
I challenge you to ask for help on one small thing over the next week that will result in you getting some you-time. For me, that will be to take Kona (our 5-year-old rescue pup) for a solo walk.