Home > Family, Friends, Help, Life > Asking for help.

Asking for help.

Less than a week ago, I moved into my own little apartment. I am brimming with excitement over this. Since I left for college, I’ve always lived with roommates and for six years, I lived  with a boyfriend.  For the past two years, I lived at home with my father. So being on my own, really being on my own feels awesome. However, after just a few days I ran into a situation where I saw that living alone might not always be as awesome as I think it is.

Late Saturday night I got really sick. I have a mild case of a chronic digestive disorder (we can save this fun topic for another time) which has been under control for awhile. Due to some carelessness on my part in terms of my diet, I found myself travelling back in time to two years ago before I was diagnosed. I was in really intense pain coupled with nausea for over 12 hours. Before I was diagnosed and had no idea what was wrong with me, I would go to the ER when this happened. This time I wasn’t sure that going to the ER, where they’d take a bunch of labs and Xrays just to tell me what I already knew, was the right thing to do. But what do I do? I knew there were probably other options, but not sleeping at all and being in such bad pain left me pretty weak and useless in terms of decision-making. So I called my dad. I didn’t want to do this. I didn’t want to ask him for help because he’d just come over the day before to put in an air conditioner. Moving out is a small way to reassert my independence, and calling my dad again to ask for something else made me feel like a little kid. Not what I wanted. Also, I didn’t want him to worry or come all the way out to the city. I didn’t know if I could really ride out the pain, or if it would die down at all, so reluctantly I called my dad. He had the sensible suggestion of calling my doctor. My doctor called in a prescription for me, but warned me if I couldn’t keep the medication down, I’d have to go to the ER anyway.  For the moment, though, I was happy to avoid the hospital. Now I just had to pick up the prescription. The pharmacy is only about four blocks away, but I was pretty knocked out. I hadn’t eaten or moved more than five feet since this whole thing started. Could I make it? Should I take a cab even though it’s only four blocks? I started to get upset. Then I calmed down and realized I could call one of my friends in the neighborhood to see if they could help me, but as with calling my dad, I really didn’t want to. For some reason, I felt embarrassed to ask. I should be able to pick up my own prescription four blocks from my apartment. But I’m sick, right? So you need help when you’re sick. Then what’s the big deal? Of course, the friend that I called didn’t hesitate to say yes and she and her husband got the medication for me. A half hour after taking my prescription, I finally fell asleep and when I work up, I was no longer in pain.

Why is it so hard to ask for help? Part of the reason why we live close to our families and form communities out of our neighbors and friends is so there is always someone around to help with the little things. No matter how independent and self-reliant we may feel, there will always be times when we need another person. It’s inevitable. I just have to turn my thinking around to understanding how lucky I am that I have people in my life whom I can call in those moments when I simply can’t do it on my own.


Categories: Family, Friends, Help, Life
  1. June 6, 2011 at 21:50

    I know this kind of defeats the point of your blog but you should check around for a pharmacy that delivers. Of course not everyone delivers but it is not unheard of either.

  2. June 7, 2011 at 20:53

    That’s a smart idea, Eric. I’ll look into it, although I hope I never have to use such services!

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