In a flurry of frustration my 11 year old screams at me…”I don’t need help.”
Over the past month, my world has turned its face to confront the reality that we all need help. In every and all different ways – I’ve begun preaching to all who will listen…at some point in life, we all need help – and not only that – but its ok to ask for it.
So here I am, with a frustrated COVID home schooled middle child who’s emerging into independence telling me…I don’t need help. The actuality of his statement after his teacher emailed me with his missing class work is…he needs help.
Is it our stubborn approach to life, or maybe our own pride that holds us back from asking – but life is FULL of challenges. I too thought I could do it all – and I mean IT ALL. A few years ago, I was at my breaking point when I decided to switch jobs to hopefully take breath towards a more balanced life. When I interviewed I told my future boss – my real goal is balance. To find a way to pursue my career goals while being the best mom possible. And I thought I had to do this, without help.
I met with the CEO who I would come to look up to over the years and asked her, “How did you do it with kids and career?” She said – I asked for help.
Never before had I had I realized how much I needed to just say the words out loud. So I did it. I hired a after school helper to get the kids off the bus, get dinner going and get them situated for activities. And I felt guilty for this action. But I acknowledged that among that guilt was a breath I needed to feel. And so for five years I juggled different child care help, different schedule adjustments, and letting myself feel as if I was doing ok.
But I wasn’t. Or was I?
My friends would say to me often, “Lori, I don’t know how you juggle it all.” I would shrug and say, well this is life.
I took a plunge this year. And yes COVID had a huge impact on this decision to find REAL balance in life – but today I was home when my daughter couldn’t navigate what class to be in online and which papers she needed. Today I took a mid-day bike ride with my 1st grader and cooked my middle child lunch in between his classes. I felt my oldest son rest his head on my shoulder as I cooked them dinner – just because.
I don’t know if this is the balance I was looking for – but it seems to be something we all need. And so I purposefully put my career in a different direction – making new connections, seeking new inspiration – and more importantly take a breath each day beside my children who obviously “need my help” – even if they don’t know they do.