I don't know what it is about asking for help, but I'm not a big fan of it. For big things, that is; when it comes to little things I'm all for it. I'll ask my hubby to open a jar, get me a drink of water, carry something heavy—that sort of thing. But when it comes to the big things I keep quiet. I'll pray quietly to God but I don't like asking people for prayer. I'll tell one or two close friends and they always say they'll pray for me, but I rarely ask.
I'm not entirely sure why this is but I've got a few ideas. For one, I'm American, and Americans are indoctrinated from birth to be independent and not rely on others for help. Okay, that's probably part of it, but it's not entirely it. Another factor is I don't like to get hurt, and if I don't tell people things then they can't hurt me when they don't live up to my expectations. That's definitely a big part of it. Hubby says that may be my plan but it doesn't work and I still end up feeling hurt and disappointed sometimes; that may be true but that pattern is still pretty ingrained in me. Last but not least, I'm a pretty private person and I don't like having to explain things, and if I don't tell people then they don't ask. Particularly when it's something that could go wrong, then I don't have to explain things if there isn't a happy ending. Like my job search: I don't talk about it on this blog for a number of reasons, but I don't always talk about it with people in-person, either. I told some people when I had interviews, but if I didn't get the job I then had to go and tell all those folks who knew I was interviewing, which was a huge pain. (For the record, I've had several interviews where I was a finalist and someone else ended up getting the job. Yes, that's the way things go and no, knowing that doesn't make it any easier.)
So back to asking for help. This morning I told a friend at church that my dad is in the hospital. She knows how busy I am and asked if I'd like her to send a prayer request to the church email list if I didn't have time. Without a second thought I shook my head and said, "No." It isn't that I don't want people to pray, it's just that sharing thing again, I don't like to broadcast things. I didn't even tell a lot of people when I had surgery (which I've now had twice in the past two years—following in my dad's footsteps a little too closely, if you ask me) and I certainly didn't use the church email list to ask for prayer. That's just too open for me. On the other hand, hubby and I are part of a small group now where one of the goals is for people to get comfortable and learn to trust and support each other. That's the kind of forum I can accept, in time. (Assuming I can get enough homework done and manage my time so I can actually attend. That's the first step.)
In the spirit of branching out I'll say that hubby and I do have some things going on right now, things that actually make it impossible for us to go to California (where my parents live) this month, regardless of the circumstances. For now there's no reason that we'd need to go and it sounds like things are under control, but it's still an added stress that I really don't need in my life right now. On top of everything else hubby is out-of-town this weekend, though he'll be back tonight. Nothing like when it rains, it pours!