Last month, somewhere between binge-watching Love and catching up on Jane the Virgin, I lie in bed scrolling through Instagram when I read some ball-busting inspirational quote about hustling and how this is the first day of the rest of your dreams or some nonsense and I groan out loud tossing the phone to the end of the bed. Nothing sounds worse than "hustling" at that moment. My throat feels like I swallowed a million miniature daggers and my head like I've been hanging upside for 24 hours. My husband whirled around the house getting our little one out the door for daycare while filling up my four different beverages and somehow showering himself. He came home in between meetings with a few bags of groceries, saw to my drink refills and went back to work. For the first 4-8 hours of any illness I find myself apologizing profusely - for inconveniencing anyone, for not pulling my weight around the house. But this one was a doozey - I couldn't move for a solid 36 hours and for the next few days relied heavily on Ben and my visiting in-laws to keep everything else in line. Sure, it meant more work for them and rearranging a few puzzle pieces but that's what we signed up for - to love in sickness and in health. Three sweet friends offered to bring us meals and I know they wouldn't have if they couldn't do it or didn't sincerely want to. We're passed the point of empty offers. That's the beauty of true community.
After the first 12 hours I came to grips with the reality that I'm not superwoman. Just because we can have or do it all doesn't mean we should. I realized that the likelihood of my house being tidy while my business is at it's most successful and my family is eating 5 fresh and healthy suppers a week is really quite bad. I can't do it all and when I slow down enough, I realize that no one is asking me to.
The older I get the more I realize how little I can do on my own. I understand that I'm lucky to be surrounded by people who truly care about me and genuinely want to help. But sometimes you have to ask for it and that can be hard.
In our individualistic society asking for or accepting the help of others can feel debilitating. Like you're doing something wrong if ever life feels like too much. This couldn't be farther from the truth. We are social creatures, made to do life together. If one of your dearest friends was experiencing a rough week wouldn't you want to help them out? True friendship is being vulnerable enough to reach out and also ask for that help yourself. It's so important to arrive at a healthy place of receiving hospitality.
It's so important to arrive at a healthy place of receiving hospitality. The offer of a friend to watch your kiddo so you can nap for two hours. A friend that wants to drop off some take out on their way home from work. Your coworkers chipping in cash because they know it's been an especially tight month for your family. There's no medal at the end of this life for going in solo. Lean into community; give and receive generously. Because mostly we're just supposed to enjoy one another, enjoy our work and love each other well.