Asking for Help

Why is it so hard for me to say those three little words? They just stick in my throat. No matter what I do, it doesn't seem to get any easier to say that one, small phrase:

"I need help."

Yuck! Just looking at the words makes me sick to my stomach! They look so pitiful, so needy. Aren't I a strong, independent woman with power and intellect enough to spare?

Aren't I so chock full of pride and, yes, fear that I am sometimes unable to admit that I don't have it all together?

As in everything, there's a balance here between the needy, co-dependant self that says, "I can't do this. Someone save me!" and the strong, independent Self that says, "God within me is All-Sufficient. I need fear nothing."

So where do I strike that balance?

One way is by surrounding myself with people who recognize my true strengths...AND weaknesses...and love me despite of them all. Or because of them all.

I have learned to create relationships with people who say, "No, I can't rescue you today, but I can baby-sit your kids for an hour so you can have some time to work this out." Or they say, "Um, Shelly, I'm going to say this with as much love as possible: WHAT ARE YOU THINKING?!" Or sometimes, they simply say, "I love you and believe in you!"

Sometimes I get a little resentful at the people who so mercilessly drag me out of my littleness. I was just settling in for a good pity party and here you come drag me out!  But I can never stay resentful for long.

So how do I get out of "Superwoman" mode, as I call it, and ask for help?

First, I have to get really clear about what I'm asking. Am I really asking for support, or am I asking for the rescue squad? Do I want help or do I want 911? (And, by the way, when I do want to be rescued, I actually picture myself dressed up in gleaming tin, riding a giant, white horse. After I'm done giggling, I always feel better and more empowered to tackle the problem.)

Once I'm clear that what I'm really asking for is support, it's a lot easier for me to find my voice. I'm not needy, I'm human! Pride doesn't have to have a thing to do with it.

Ask. But don't ask me to rescue you. That shining knight stuff only works from the inside.


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