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Accepting help. Why is it so bloody hard?
We all know the scene.
Standing in the grocery line up. Screaming toddler yanking at your shirt, squirming baby in your arms, holding a jug of milk with one abnormally strong pinky and the support of your peanut-butter-handprint covered thigh. A middle aged woman with a kind smile comes and says “Can I give you a hand?”
Inside your head you’re screaming “HOLY SMOKIN’ HOT MOTHER OF ZEUS, YES! Please! Take something, anything, out of my hands before I lose every last piece of my shit in the middle of the grocery store!”. But instead, what comes out of your mouth is “Oh! Thank you so much but….I’m ok.”
Which is a ridiculous statement. Everyone can see that you’re not ok, as you fumble towards the checkout. Screaming baby, whining toddler. You drop your wallet, coins darting in every direction, whirring out of control. Just like your day.
Why do we deny the help?
We don’t want to burden anyone.
We don’t want to come across like we can’t handle it.
We don’t want people to think that we’re failing.
We don’t want to seem selfish.
We think those things yet…we know how it feels to be on the other side. To be the one offering the help.
Genuinely, kindly, in the hopes of making someone else’s day just a tiny bit easier. Because we have been there. Because it feels good to help someone.
We want to help! Then the person says “No thank you” and we feel deflated. Awkward. Dismissed.
It’s time to crush that shit. Time to bring down these weird, unnatural walls of “perfection” and “independence”. We can all help each other out, you know. We can start building humility and community.
Help doesn’t mean weakness, and it doesn’t mean failure.
It just means you’re not in it alone.
After each of my babies, I suffered varying levels of postpartum depression and anxiety. I took it on the chin. I didn’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable around me, so I kept it to myself. I smiled when people asked me how I was doing, how I was adjusting to new baby life. I giggled when I told them it was hard, I joked about the hormones.
I told them what they wanted to hear, camouflaging what I needed them to know.
That I wasn’t okay. That I needed some help.
My journey with my blogging experience has really come full circle.
I went from being there, desperate for help but scared to ask for it.
To here. Now. Still scared, but open. Free.
And I am now the one being approached to step in and help.
BabyGoRound is a registered charity organization based in Vancouver, Canada. They do amazing work in helping lower income families by providing essential products, equipment and clothing for their infants and young children. Their goal is really to aid mothers in accessing the essentials that they need to ensure the proper growth and overall well-being of their children.
My good friends over at Medela Canada reached out to me to help spread the word on a new program that they are firing up with BabyGoRound. They will be offering breastfeeding awareness and education programs, emphasizing the physical and financial benefits to breastfeeding. They are also going to be starting a pump donation program, helping to get an amazing pump (from the best brand) into the hands (and onto the boobs) of Moms that really need one.
This is HUGE. Aiding new Moms in the process of breastfeeding not only puts their babies on the fast track to a healthy immune system, less risk of allergies, less risk of infection…but it’s also providing them a much needed break in costs.
Supplying them with a pump allows them to continue their breastfeeding relationship, even if they have to return to work quickly.
Look, asking for help is fucking hard. We have covered that topic, and I know damn well I’m not the only one that feels that way. These families, these women, these MOTHERS…they’re asking for our help. They NEED our help.
I don’t know about you, but that hits me right in the damn feels.
If you can’t donate money…don’t feel bad! I’m broke as shit too.
Donate your time. Get in touch, go connect with families one on one.
Donate some items! Gently used baby clothing or gear (EXCEPT pumps…those are medical devices licensed as single user and non-shareable. Because..ya know…boobie germs.*)
If you’re not willing or able to do any of the above…then just share this. Spread the word. Engage with the cause. Maybe it will reach someone that has a little extra to share…or maybe it will reach someone that needs the help that is being offered.
I have so much respect for the people that bite the bullet and reach out for help.
Let’s honour that. Let’s start rebuilding this humility, this community.
And lets hook these families UP!
* Breast pumps are medical devices that are licensed by Health Canada as single user, non shareable. “Boobie germs” is a legitimate concern…also known as contamination. The other major factor is the motor strength, which dwindles over time and after a certain level of usage.