In the past couple of weeks I have been blessed to find out how much support I actually do have in my life. People sending me messages, phone calls, and even coming to me to chat or give a hug. Sometimes support even comes in a strict voice telling you to go home! To all those people, I want to say thank you. Today’s blog may be a bit of a repeat of reflecting on March, but with a different spin. I knew I don’t know how to accept support, but the week that has gone by at Harlequin was an eye opener of note.
My inability to accept support has been impacting me and probably the people around me more than I could have ever imagined. I always thought that I am very good at getting input from people and “not knowing much”. By this I mean I always thought that I give people the opportunity to find their own answers, their own path, to be right. I have been living in a box, a black box, without a lid, but to me it looked like there was a lid. The biggest reason I battle to receive support, is because the truth is that I actually think I am right. I am flexible to be influenced in my degree of rightness, but essentially I have never questioned that I may be completely wrong and actually there is a better, and easier way, a way that makes absolutely no sense to me initially, but once I give it a shot fits perfectly.
It took bursting out in tears of frustration on a very simple exercise, something someone as analytical and mathematical as I am, should be able to do instantly. It had me sobbing my absolute heart out, feeling like shouting “leave me alone!”. But that is exactly the point – I am so busy doing things on my own, that I don’t even see the hands stretched out towards me. Not only willing to give me some assistance, but also asking me to stop making everything they say or do wrong, stop telling them what to do, and giving them a chance to try.
It all makes perfect sense to me now. Why have I felt stuck? Because I believe I should know the answer and that I should be doing it on my own, my way. Why do I have headaches? I still don’t know, but I have kept my “I don’t knows” confined to diet, emotions, stress. Maybe, just maybe, there is something completely different, lying right in front of me, but just outside of my box. Maybe somebody is reaching out, but I won’t take their hand. Maybe my head is aching because my soul can see the hand, but I keep smacking it on the back to say it can’t be the answer. Ironically enough, Leon and I have had a number of fights where he confronted me about insisting I have the right answer. My love, I have always thought you were arrogant and wrong, but maybe I was wrong, I was wrong, I’m sorry!
Odelle – my racing partner and friend – told me this week that sometimes support is just an ear listening. My response was that I always feel my problems are so much smaller, that people wouldn’t want to hear about it. Is that true – maybe it is. But for each of us our individual problems are just as huge as the next person’s. I belittle myself and my problems, I make myself less important by making other people’s problems bigger than mine. So now I have a whole bunch of small problems in a heap four times bigger than it would have been if I dealt with it when it came up the first time.
To all of those supporting me, again, thank you. But now I can finally say that I will take your hand. And if I’m not seeing your hand, please smack me on the head! To Harlequin, thank you for making this visible to me, and for making me cry the deep sobs I’ve needed to get out for a looooooong time!
My next challenge – giving support instead of help. Helping is essentially doing things for someone. Support is still letting them do the thing, but assisting them in doing so. To teach your child to drive a car, you sit in the passenger seat. You don’t sit next to them in the driver seat and turn the steering wheel and step on the clutch. You watch them driving, sometimes fearfully, but guiding them through the steps. This is one of my many next lessons, bring on the challenge!