Monday, June 16, 2008

help

Why is it so hard to accept help?

I was just at the grocery store with baby b. Unlike me, he loves to shop. The grocery store we go to has a fun “car cart” that he drives, beeping and vrooming at people as we go.

The only problem with the car cart is you’re not supposed to take it outside. When the noisy boys were small, this was a serious issue. With just one toddler, though, it’s not usually a big deal. The checker puts the bagged groceries in a normal cart, I plop the baby in that seat, and off we go.

But today the checker put the groceries in the cart without unfolding the seat first, so there was no place for baby b. to sit. I didn’t want to make a fuss, so I just left. First I tried carrying baby b. and pushing the cart with one hand. Kind of tricky. Next, I tried holding baby b’s hand while he walked, pushing the cart a little bit at a time. It was ridiculous how complicated it was just getting to my minivan.

Two women stopped me on their way out and asked, “Do you need help?” It’s like I’ve got a built in “no” reflex or something because without really thinking about it, I just waved them on by. “No thanks! I’ve got it!”

But I didn’t have it. I really needed a hand.

Does anyone else do this or is it just me?

12 comments:

Kelsey said...

I am the same exact way. We were in the Mall the other week and I was trying to hold onto all three kids and fifty bags and a sweet women asked if I needed help. I told her no but she wouldnt buy it and grabbed some of my bags and helped me out. It was reallly sweet!

Erika Haub said...

Um, yeah. Sunday I arrived at church with two squirrely ones and a crier in need of his nap. While the big kids dined with Dad at the Father's Day brunch inside, I paced the sidewalk out front attempting to stroller my baby to sleep. A dear woman, new to our congregation, came out and offered in her broken English to push the baby for me so I could go inside and "join my husband". I shook my head and said "no, I'm fine." But I wasn't fine. I was weary and fed up and should have let it go...and so she was refused the blessing of serving, which she clearly longed to do, and I kept my grumpies to myself rather than "throwing them over the fence" as my grandfather used to have us do.

The Oho Report said...

It helps me to know I am not alone. This holding the tongue thing is a bad disease. sometimes I wish I would hold my tongue in other things.

I am learing this whole thing with me is fear. I think the bible says some things about "fear not",
Otto

Llama Momma said...

Kelsey -- I'm glad I'm not alone!

Erika -- I've thought this many times, how I rob others of the blessing of helping when I say "no." I think I justify it by accepting help when everything is completely hopeless and desperate, and tell myself that the rest of the time, I'll just get by on my own. The silly thing is that now that the twins are a bit older and I can breathe again, I realize how short the season of desperately needing help really is. I wish I had accepted more of it when they were younger.

Llama Momma said...

Oho --You make such a good point! How easy to hold our tongue when we need to say, "Yes, please, I'd love help," or just plain "help!" How much more difficult when the temptation to gossip or speak ill of someone arises...

Anonymous said...

you're not alone. I feel like it makes me less of a "good mom" or "good person" if I have to admit to needing help - even to let someone push my cart across the parking lot. and then i get huffy when someone won't accept help from me - when I can see plain as day they need a hand! ssr

clc said...

i'm sure we all have our "i can do it myself" moments. funny how when i say it that way, i almost sound like a toddler! anyway, as i move on in my journey, i've realized this is a waste and i've started to not only receive but ask for help alot more. and there's nothing like being 9 months pregnant to remind you that yeah, you do need help!

Llama Momma said...

SSR -- Maybe that's it. The "good mom" thing. But I never see a Mom in a pickle and think she's a BAD Mom. I think, "oh, I have so been there..."

CLC -- It is kind of a toddler attitude, isn't it? And, yes, pregnancy is an all around good humbling experience. You're getting close, no?

Ellen said...

You're definitely not alone. The pessimist in me tends to assume that people don't really want to help, even when they offer. Or I worry that I will be putting them out or something.

Oh yeah, and I'm a perfectionist control freak. What if they do things differently than I would!? And accepting help shows how little control I actually have...All silly really, but those are the underlying attitudes that keep me from accepting help, even when I could really use it.

Linda said...

In my forties, I am much more amenable to physical help than before. Not that I'm decrepit yet, but I just feel OK about it. For instance, at work, if Im carrying a heavy package and one of the men on staff asks to help, if they're going my way, I sure do let them carry it!

Marmot Mom said...

Gotta agree with Linda on this one, having just crested the big 5-0. I'm not decrepit either but I find I'm so much more willing to take people at their word these days. Not many people go out of their way to make offers like that unless they really mean it. Then, when I accept, it's a blessing for both :)

Lady Why said...

Oh, I am terrible about that too! Those sweet Publix sackers are always offering to help me out to the car, and do I let them? Never. Of course, it may have something to do with the 'stuff bomb' that goes off in my van on a seemingly daily basis that I don't want them to see. I have a reputaion to uphold, you know! :-P