One of the hardest lessons I’ve had to learn is to accept and ask for help. I’ve had a lifetime to prefect self-sufficiency and going it alone. Care taking others, figuring out systems for them, and taking on tasks to ease their way, is a piece of cake for me. This strategy has helped me develop many talents, and learn new ways of doing things. That’s the good news. However, there is a down side to this constant giving: the muscle that, asks for and receives help, has atrophied. Even so, there is some hope for me yet. Lately, some events have forced me to start exercising this less used muscle, and it is because of some small things, and then some very big things.
Recently, I had to pack some boxes because there was some work being done on my office. A friend asked if she could help me. What a concept, someone at my side to help move stuff out of the room. This may seem like a small thing to many, but to me it was an enormous shift in the teeter-totter of giving and receiving. My heart was full with gratefulness at how quickly it went. And more than that, it was so much more fun.
The bigger event happened with my circle of Conveners of the Millionth Circle (www.millionthcircle.org). We were celebrating our ten year anniversary with a three day gathering. Toward the end of our time together they brought out a money tree with $20 bills attached to all the branches. At first no one said who and what it was for. I must confess feeling quite guilty that I missed the emails asking for a contribution for something (I didn’t know what). Finally, Ronita eased my distress and then amazed me when she said it was for me. It was enough money for a plane ticket to be able to attend the induction ceremony in Akron, Ohio into the Broadcasters Hall of Fame. This was a big happening for that receiving muscle. It now had to lift a huge load, and my friends helped me do it.
If you want to join me in Akron, please let me know. The event is November 6th. Both Michael and I have been nominated, and chosen as 2011 recipients of this honor. As of now, we’re not sure if Michael will be able to attend, or if I’ll be representing the both of us. However, we’d love to have anyone join us. The cost is $35 each, and I can send you the details, as to where to send the money.
It’s never too late to learn how to receive. I’m living proof.
Photo: Chris Pugh (cc by 2.0)