Today, I asked a friend to come over and help me survive. Jensen went back to work yesterday, Bryson is at my parents’ house, and for the first time in a very long time, I was going to have something I’d wished for repeatedly – a day home alone with no kids.
I remember complaining to Jensen that I never had days to myself. As a shift-worker, Jensen has a few days alone every month. My days off were always with the kids.
But, I don’t wish for time to myself anymore. Brody turned 18 months old today. And this was never a day I wanted to live without him.
So, I had to admit to myself and to my friend that I needed her to spend this gorgeous, sunny Thursday helping me check mundane items off my to-do list.
Admirably, she had no hesitation. She brought enough snacks and lunch and supper for two days. She made phone calls for me, helped me go through stacks of paper in my office – she sat with me and watched me write emails. She gave me sound advice and made me laugh.
It was humbling to be so needy. I felt selfish taking this day from her when everyone’s life has challenges and I should suck it up and look for lost library books on my own. Even acknowledging that I needed to be home and get stuff done instead of watching movies or going to the park made me uncomfortable.
But I’m proud that I was vulnerable. I’m thankful that I asked for help. I wish I didn’t need it, but it’s okay that I do.
I’m learning more every day that the willingness to be vulnerable is a tremendous strength.
For me, today, it took strength to lean on someone. And for my friend, I imagine it took strength to share advice when there are no perfect words, or to laugh with me when my situation is the furthest thing from funny.
Without vulnerability, I would have wasted this day suffocating in the darkness. I am glad I didn’t believe the lie that I deserve that. And I am glad for friends who are brave enough to share their light.