Daily Prompt: Take Care
When you’re unwell, do you allow others to take care of you, or do you prefer to soldier on alone? What does it take for you to ask for help?
The past few years, I made the decision to forego the use of painkillers of the cough-and-cold variety. I wanted to build up my own strength and tolerance levels. I believe that the existence of conveniences is not reason enough for their exploitation, and that sometimes the hard route is better in the long run. Recently, I was sick enough that I had to go against my personal rule and take some medication. It felt like I was bending somehow, and that’s when I realized that what I had thought was my way of becoming stronger was actually partly based in pride – not taking medicine made me feel like I was better somehow, stronger than those who did.
In general, when unwell, I shy away from help because I dislike feeling like a burden or that I’m inconveniencing anyone. I dislike being in anyone’s debt – again, pride.
It takes crippling “unwellness” for me to ask for help. Only when I am unable to function, or when there is something I need significantly more than my intact ego, do I turn to others for help. When I get help, however, it brings tears to my eyes. It makes me feel loved. It takes me back to my childhood when I loved falling sick, because it meant that my mother would feed me, take care of me, and in general make me feel loved. Help makes me believe the best of people again.
In the end I question myself: why do I dislike asking for help, really? Is it the pride, is it because I don’t want to burden anyone, or is it because I truly want to increase my physical pain threshold? Or maybe, and this just occurred to me, is it because I want to increase my emotional pain threshold? Because I don’t want to feel like a child, a dependant, don’t want to feel loved too often, don’t want to lose the preciousness, borne of rarity, of the relief that comes from knowing, with every cell in your body, that you’re loved.
Take care, Friend.