I have heard over the past decade or so that I am too independent; that I need to let people in, ask for help and receive help. In the past five or six months, this is all I hear though.
I wish it would stop. I am a fiercely independent person. I have been taking my care of myself for as long as I remember. I worked 40 hours from my sophomore year of college til I graduated; year round, no breaks during the summer. In the recent past, I have worked 2 and 3 jobs to meet my obligations but also make sure I didn’t rack up any debt. This is me. I have always been this way. It’s not that I don’t believe others can’t help, but quite frankly, when I have asked for help, I have been let down by the very people who say they will always be there. This includes family, but more than that, friends who claim me to be family. My therapists have told me that I need to give people more chances. How many chances should I give to be hurt? 5? 10? I can’t answer that but I know after I while, I stop asking. I do not assume others won’t be there for me, but over the years, this has been hard for me to accept as a truth.
As I said, recently, everyone feels it is appropriate to tell me that I need to ask for help. That I need to accept help. I am asking any person who knows me to please stop doing this. You disregard who I am when you do this. I have been asking for help since I was diagnosed with cancer. I have been receiving it as best I can. I may not ask you specifically, but someone else. There are people who have gifts in different ways and I appreciate that this is one you want to give to me. But after 40 years of being who I am, please do not believe that in less than 6 months, I will completely change my entire being. I have been taking steps toward changing but they are small and you may not see them, but I do.
I know that this post seem harsh. It may seem as if I am an ungrateful person. This is not my intent and hope you will not read it this way. For me to go to a life where I believe that I am my sole caretaker, to a life where everyone wants to be there for me and are there for me, is incredibly overwhelming for me. To try to manage this, to learn to manage this, has been a tough thing for me. I don’t know how to have this amount of love, caring and friendship in my life at one time. This concept may be foreign to you but hope you can understand who I am better by knowing this. To take a risk and be this honest is probably not appropriate. I don’t want to alienate anyone, I just want to be normal and not the girl who has cancer and needs taking care of. I want to laugh, go out, and just live like you do. Please let me do that.