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Bracing Myself for Being Cared For

Tying a shoeAny of you who know me in person or have been reading this site long enough know that I am fiercely independent to a fault. I may be a wimp for a few hours, or a day at the most, when I have the flu or something that knocks me for a loop, but those things are very rare events in my life.

I never grew out of the habit that young kids have when they insist, “I’ll do it mySELF!!” and I’ve taken it up a few notches in my “old age.” Sure, there is the give and take in marriage of letting the other do something for you, like I was forced to do when my last semester of college was stressing me out to the max. Beautiful was so beyond awesome by fixing meals that I normally did, bringing me snacks upstairs while I was studying for hours, and just generally putting up with me.

/begin small rant setting the stage for my personal issue

I’ve also got some very ingrained beliefs about what is acceptable social behavior, and making someone else do something for you because you won’t do something to help yourself or asking for help when it’s really more a matter of being lazy (a matter of the heart that one has to discover over time while giving of themselves). I don’t believe in many social programs for this reason, though I do realize there is a certain point where some people are actually unable to function or work any longer and it is not possible for family to care for them like used to happen. Society would be a better place if 2 and 3 generations lived under one roof again – as it is still common in so many cultures – in my opinion.

I will NOT go on disability, even if I’m on the double-lung transplant list. It’s just not going to happen. I’d have to lose all of my fingers and my voice before I wouldn’t provide for my family. That’s just the way I am. Bottom line: I’m a provider and loyal to my duties beyond measure. This leads to my problem, even just being out for a day or two…

/end rant and begin explaining what is wrong with me

I simply have to accept that I will need to be waited on hand and foot after surgery… at least until morning. Few of you know exactly how hard that will be for me. There are few things I dislike more than being physically able to do something and not do it in favor of someone else doing it for me “just because” I’m supposed to be taking it easy.

Even when I am exhausted and Beautiful realizes it and moves in to take over, I am rarely able to force myself to sit down or take a nap while she goes about the matters of the house. I can’t imagine how impossible I’d be if I had to let everyone do things for me for 10 days and a lot of things for weeks… like no driving for 3 months!? I know myself well enough to know that it will take a small miracle to let me let go of responsibilities for a time and make getting better my sole responsibility.

I guess that’s why I’m working so hard to get us in a financial position so that I give myself a snowball’s chance of taking it easy as long as I’m supposed to; otherwise, I KNOW I will be on the laptop connecting with clients way earlier than I’m supposed to so I can have peace that my household is being taken care of while I’m being taken care of. That is how strong my drive is since Beautiful said, “I do.”

For now, this Monday and Tuesday only, I have to let go…

…and it will be hard.


  1. Just let go and trust in the Lord – Our prayers are with you
    Love – G-pa & G-ma~~~

    • Thanks!

      • I guess you get that naturally, Jesse. And my dad was the same way, so you come from of long line of independent minded do-it-yourself providers. I’ve had some experiences like Ron’s and it was hard for me to let others do for me. It might seem strange, but God actually gave me a sense of blessing from being the opportunity for someone else to be a servant. Those of us who love to do things for others have a hard time when the tables are turned. We need to step outside ourselves and take a look from the vantage point of another person who has a servant’s heart.

        I can really feel for Ron’s comment about having damaged limbs & not able to fasten his pants. I was the same after the motorcycle accident. Your mom had to fasten my britches and cut my food for me. But it was “Mommy, me do!” as soon as I could manage. LOL!

        We’ll pray that the surgery goes well and also that you’ll be able to easily adjust to being pampered for a little while.

  2. I can relate…same sentiments are raging in my bloodstream. “Probbly” in a lot of folks is my guess.

    The one thing that has tempered this for me was the sage advice of a friendly mentor many years ago:

    “Don’t rob those people who can and want to help you of the blessing of serving you.”

    This shift in the paradigm made for many new and deeper connections to these people.

    One example, and I’ll quit hogging the space here….when I shattered my wrist and compound fractured my elbow, I was unable to drive or even button my pants for that matter for about eight weeks due to the external fixator [an erector set thingy) on the wrist and the pain in my elbow. I switched to pull up sweats (fortunately it was in COLD Wisconsin) to solve the latter. The driving thing turned out to be a blessing beyond measure.

    One of the men in our church knew that I was able to return to work, but that I was transportation-challenged. He was recently retired and offered to be my chauffeur. My wife, Ardell, dropped me off at the office on her way to work and picked me up after work, but this kind and servant-hearted man made himself available every weekday to move me from point A to point B. Some of those physical therapy sessions (3 times a week) got longer than expected with wait times in the waiting room, but he was content to get the call at any time to pick me up. He got me to lunch appointments, committee meetings, you name it for the entire eight weeks.

    It took everything within me to allow him to care for me this way, but the smiles it produced on his face told me that there’s something to that sage’s advice: Satisfaction for HIM in caring and satisfaction for me in KNOWING that he cared so much.

  3. Our prayers are with you and K. that all goes well with both the surgery and the recovery. Sending you love and hugs always!