You know those people who are always asking for something? You buy them lattes because they always seem to be misplacing their debit card. They are constantly looking for someone to watch their children, with little or no notice. They take you up on that joking offer to clean out your fridge… and they actually eat the old stuff! You buy the first round and miraculously there is rarely a second round. They help themselves to those rather pricy protein bars you bring to work. Yeah, those people annoy me. And I’m constantly cautious of never being one of those people. Frankly, I just have a problem accepting help. From anyone.
Growing up I was taught, if you want something, you work for it. I was taught to be independent, to take care of myself and not lean on others. Looking back, my first marriage probably failed partially because I learned that lesson well, maybe too well. And no, not blaming my parents, they taught me well, but perhaps I took the sentiment to the extreme. If I wasn’t so independent, would I have even sought divorce from my first husband? Rewind 100 years… Was the divorce rate so low because women depended on their husbands more so than many do today and felt divorce wasn’t even an option? I didn’t need my ex-husband to support me financially, in fact, my income was greater than his and therefore offered me lots of independence. And he worked a lot, just as Eric does, often overnight, so I was very used to depending on myself at home from an emotional standpoint as well.
After my divorce was final in early February of 2008 I bought a townhouse, another big, independent move for a then single 28 year-old female, or so I was told by many. I liked living alone, but did have a ton of extra space and thus searched for a roommate. I met ‘A’ through a random ad I placed online and we quickly bonded. She’s quite different from me in many ways, she cooks, cleans, and perhaps isn’t quite the girly girl I am, both we have a ton in common. Our love of Dairy Queen for one! ‘A’ got married, had a baby, and lived happily ever after, but thankfully is still a close friend!
I had several other roommates, one well-known as ‘Dumbass’ to my Facebook friends… He was something. I’ll never forget the day he asked me if he was supposed to cut open those little dishwasher detergent packs!
The roommate I’ve known the longest though was ‘F’ who I met way back in 2003 through work. She’s loving and sweet and wild and sometimes even a little crazy, but I love her. She’s been through lots of jobs with me, two husbands, a broken engagement, gosh, so much. She even introduced me to Eric! (I’ll have to find the story of how Eric and I met and post it.)
‘A’ and ‘F’ both separately offered to carry a child for me, should the need arise. I have a lot of thoughts and feelings on this, but honestly, not quite sure how to put them into words. Not at this time anyway. Both these dear friends have beautiful children of their own and obviously understand the great joy and love that comes with mommy-hood. And they also understand my strong desire to experience this for myself…
During our initial IVF consultation, the nurse turned to Eric and me and asked our plan if IVF trials are unsuccessful. Having watched my sister adopt twice, I’m fairly against adoption. Not because I wouldn’t welcome any child into my home and life, but because the process is daunting. Ultimately, if there is a way for Eric and I to have a biological child, it would be our preference. That said though, how does one ask someone to carry a child for them??? Is there really any greater gift and sacrifice by the surrogate? I’m not even sure I could stay home with kids and completely depend on Eric financially, much less allow someone to give up a year of their life and risk their own health and happiness for my sake. So much to consider… I just don’t even have words to express how touched I am by ‘A’ and ‘F’s’ offers. Maybe someday, after I have children of my own, God willing, I will understand their generosity.
Speaking of generosity… Another good friend ‘M’ made an extremely sweet offer just this morning. (If anything, this experience has taught me how many phenomenal people I have surrounding me!) My next appointment is tomorrow for an ultrasound and then the dreaded injection teaching. During our initial consultation I was instructed to bring a ‘willing participant’ to my next appointment, since Eric will still be out-of-town. My plan has been to go alone, as again, my issue accepting help from others. (This is the same reason why Kona has spa weekends at Just Dogs Playcare rather than staying with friends or family when Eric and I travel. I just don’t feel right imposing on others. I even hate staying with family out-of-town. I’d much rather get a hotel.) Earlier this week, another friend, ‘L’ offered to accompany me to my appointment. I declined, and I truly hope ‘L’ wasn’t offended. It was so very kind of ‘L’ to offer, but it’s her day off, and I know she has a million things on her own to-do-list. And it would be terribly boring for her, as who knows how long the wait it be. So yes, I declined her kind offer. When ‘M’ offered this morning to learn how to give me the shots, it occurred to me, she is the one person I see on a daily basis who I trust dearly, and who has seen me at my worst. I accepted her offer, but it was so difficult for me, and I still plan to remind her tomorrow morning she can still back out. She is so busy at work, and for her to give up even an hour or two tomorrow is quite a sacrifice I’m asking of her. Not to mention the fact that I’m going to be a pain in my own behind (literally) every day for the next how many days! There is really no way to thank her for this offer. I hope she knows how truly appreciative I am, and what a relief of stress I feel knowing I’m not doing this all completely alone. Thank you so much ‘M’.