Anyone who knows me knows that I'm fiercely independent. Before I became a mom I would probably have spent hours at the bottom of a hole before admitting I needed to call for help. I've always been all about doing everything myself and never asking for help. Pregnancy and motherhood have changed me.
I learned my lesson the hard way back when I was 7 months pregnant with C. In an effort to keep the house a little tidy I leaned forward to pick up a t-shirt that was lying on the floor. I never made it back up. My back completely gave out and I had to crawl to the phone. I was originally just going to call work to say I wasn't coming in, but I quickly realized that I needed someone to come rescue me. It wasn't a pretty sight; fat pregnant woman, flat on her back on the floor in the kitchen, cat screaming to be fed... To be honest, if I hadn't been so hungry I would probably just have waited for M to come home at lunchtime, but a pregnant woman has to eat and I didn't think I could wait four hours.
I called a close friend and she rushed to my rescue. I asked for help and the sky didn't come crumbling down. Even more importantly, she didn't think any less of me. I actually think that she would have thought I was an idiot for not calling for help. As she helped me onto the couch I realized that it was no longer just about me being the tough chick. I had another person relying on me, and even though she wasn't born yet she needed me to be a grown-up and be brave enough to admit when I needed help.
Today I have no qualms about asking for help, or just saying yes when people offer it of their own free will. I've learned that most people won't offer assistance if they don't want to help. I've also learned that every little bit can make or break a day. Having someone spend ten minutes playing Legos with your toddler can give you a much needed break. Letting a friend bring you dinner means that you can spend a little more time bonding with your baby. And asking someone to help you get off the kitchen floor and onto the couch can mean the world when your back is so out of whack that you can't do it by yourself.
So next time you find yourself in a bind and someone kindly offers assistance, just say yes. It doesn't prove that you are weak, it just shows that you are smart, and you'll be amazed at the difference it can make.