When I tell you that in recent years I have come a LONG way- let me tell you. I was and in some respects still am that girl who will do it all. Herself. Alone. Struggling, but still doing it alone. I don’t know if it’s the Sagittarius in me, the 2nd child syndrome or what!! But wow, I had to work hard within myself to be able to sit back and actually accept help; let alone ask for it. In this blog post, I’m going to open up about my journey into allowing myself to be vulnerable and accepting help from others in various aspects of my life.
Let me begin but saying I have always been fiercely independent and sometimes detrimentally so. At 35, nearing 36, I can sit back and fully admit this. In my past I would be hurting, physically or emotionally and I would be damned if I ever show vulnerability. I didn’t want to let people see or even know I had that side to my personality. I don’t know when that began necessarily, but I’m sure it stems from some low key Freudienne Daddy Issues, which is another blog post altogether. All that to say- I did it all. Within my relationships, I kept my partners at an arms distance, only showing them the sides of me I thought they could handle or the sides I thought would keep them interested and attracted to me. I liked what they liked, I watched what they watched and I eventually became a version of myself I didn’t really know. Some of that is on me, protectionism at its best- not wanting to let someone fully in because I didn’t want to get hurt. Didn’t want them to know too much about me because that meant they could really get to my core. A perfect shot. But in the end, I still hurt because it was hurting/hiding myself. Of course it’s fear. Fear of them rejecting me if they truly got to know me for me. But living in a cage doesn’t give you the best views. I can look back and safely say that my 1st ever true love was my father. This is probably true for many little girls, I worshipped the ground he walked on, he could literally do no wrong. Of course, this is flawed, our parents are flawed and in turn we are flawed.
You can be stong, confident & INDEPENDENT and still be gentle, vulnerable & open.@femalehustlers
I was that person, I would be upset at the messy kitchen awaiting me, I would begin to tackle it all and in the process get increasingly upset that the task (among many) was left for me to do alone. With little or no apparent thought or regret for how it got that way. I wouldn’t ask for help, because to me- it was a sign that I couldn’t do it. So, instead I would stay in the kitchen cleaning, as I rant and churn over my emotions, expecting to be questioned as to why I was mad. Because, you know…people need to be mind readers and all. You have to be able to speak/vocalise your upset, constructively and you have to ask for the help. Now if the help doesn’t come, well then that’s yet another blog post. But you have to be willing to put your hand out, for someone to reach back. It really is as simple as that. In the time when our collective mental healths aren’t at their best, we need to be able to take a deep breath, exhale and reach out a hand seeking help, because a run down mother is going to miss out on things simply because she couldn’t let go of the notion that all the balls have to be in her basket and hers alone. Trust me when I say, it took me losing it all (yes, it was my decision, but it doesn’t make the loss any less of a loss), to know who my day ones were. It took me being in a bad place emotionally to know who I could reach out to and to know that there would be someone on the other line, but most of all- it took me actually reaching out and saying, I need some air, can you help? No, I never fell apart, I didn’t have a break down- but it didn’t mean that the load wasn’t heavy for me.
What I learned over the years is, you have to know what you want and you have to be somewhat unapologetic about what it is that you want, because if you don’t know you…why do you expect someone else to invest in you when you haven’t as well? You have to be willing to be vulnerable and to also check yourself. Look internally and recognize the root of certain behaviours. Your constant need to have things a certain way, my constant need to try to manage inevitabilities, not liking surprises. These are all things which contribute to me being wound up and closed off. Finding someone who wants your best interest at heart, find someone who wants you to succeed. Find someone who is constantly pushing your further- to be the best version of yourself. The open, honest version. Because when you have that, other things will fall into place. You will begin to feel safe and comfortable to say what it is you’d like help with; making lists (I love a good list), dividing out tasks, and even if it’s not done in practice (right away), speaking about how it makes your feel, but in some respects recognizing that it’s all stemming from your drive to control and reduce the unexpected. There is nothing wrong with that concept or aspect of your personality- trust me- I get it, as long as you are not harming anyone- the right people will accept you for who you are and try to find ways to help you and thus reduce your stress over it all. It’s amazing how when the puzzle pieces are right, it all feels so easy. Love has made me see things in such a different light, I knew it to be true, but now I can say that I have experienced it to be true.
I like being independentTori Kelly- Dear No One
Not so much of an investment
No one to tell me what to do
I like being by myself
Don’t gotta entertain anybody else
No one to answer to
But sometimes, I just want somebody to hold
Someone to give me the jacket when it’s cold
Got that young love even when we’re old
I want someone to grab my hand
Pick me up, pull me close, be my man
I will love you till the end
Our healing begins with us. Our happiness begins with us. Our joy, begins with us. Yes, there will be aspects where a compromise will need to be had, but if it means something to you- then be honest. The right people or person will try to meet you half way or they will deliver. Oddly enough, the idea of being taken care of, being catered to is not something I have really had in a relationship. But!! My word is it attractive to me now. Having someone who wants to protect you, who is concerned about your well-being, carries things for you and does some of the heavy lifting. 😍 I don’t know who I have become, but it has definitely been refreshing and has been a revelation. I have found myself much more relaxed and much more open and feeling appreciated and grateful. I have learnt to let go (even if it’s a little bit and even if it’s only for an hour). I cannot micromanage it all, I cannot live my life like it’s all planned out and that there will not be any spills. Life doesn’t work like that- and if I force myself to stay wound up and controlling it all- I will completely miss the opportunities I could be having or witnessing if I just sat down and caught my breath.