And it sucks.
I have basically lived on my own since just before my 18th birthday. My parents have always been supportive, but while still 17 I moved to Germany and I haven't lived at home since. In fact at most times I have been at least a six hour drive if not a 14 hour flight away so while my parents can give me advice on what to do they can not physically help me with anything. Like most things, this has it's pros and cons.
I can change my car's headlights on my own. I can assemble my own furniture. I have developed a great relationship with my car's mechanic. I have learned how to take care of most basic repairs or at least have someone I trust I can call. I have moved myself more times than I want to think about. I even attached my headboard to my bed frame all on my own.
There is a great feeling of pride and accomplishment that comes with doing these things on my own. I love knowing that under most circumstances I've got it. I look at friends whose parents do almost everything for them and I wonder what will happen to them when their parents are no longer around. What will happen when they have to figure it out on their own?
I know we are never truly alone if we have God in our hearts and our lives.
It's just there are times I wish I didn't have to do it all on my own. I don't want my guy friends to yell at me for never letting them help. I don't enjoy having to figure out how I am going to make it all happen or get everything taken care of. I really didn't appreciate being broken up with because he wanted a girl he could save.
Because it's not that I don't ask... I do ask. It may not be often anymore, but I do. And usually when I reach out needing help, I find that there is no one available to give it.
- I spent an entire Saturday from 7 am - 6pm pulling up Bermuda grass, planting plants and mulching my "yard". It was hot and exhausting work, but I did it all on my own. Neighbors walked past, friends knew what I was doing and not one of them was available to help. For the next few weeks, I received compliments and heard, "I would have helped..." but they weren't available on the day I was doing it.
- I found a gas grill for my friend M on Freecycle.org and promised the lady I would pick it up by noon Saturday. I sent our mutual friend BB a text message about helping and his response was "When and Where" yet a few hours later he kept trying to switch the day to Sunday. I ended up calling M and the two of us took care of it. BB was all upset because he said he would help us and then we didn't let him, but he kept wanting to argue about when to go get it and that was one of the few points that I couldn't alter.
- This past week on Thursday I found a lady who was getting rid of 2 TVs, a 200 CD changer, a receiver and the speakers. I tried contacting anyone I knew who had an SUV to help me because I was really hoping that I wouldn't have to take the car seats out of my car. Of all the text messages, voice mails and emails I sent out I didn't receive any help. I ended up taking the car seats out and clearing out my trunk. When I got to the house I carried it all to my car and got it loaded in. I did receive one text message back hours later that night after it was all over.
It's not that I resent having to do it on my own, I just hate the accusation that I don't ever ask for or accept help. I ask. I would accept if it was offered. The problem I have found over the years is that the guys I know like to say they would help but rarely are they actually around to offer until I have taken care of it on my own. I try really hard not to paint all guys with that brush, but I have also quit asking them for help in most situations because it sucks when it's offered but without any follow through.
I wish I had someone who could help me. Someone who would be strong when I wasn't. Someone I could trust to handle things for a while so I could just let go. I make a million decisions a day for the kids I work with from what to feed them to how to explain God to them. It would be really nice to come home and lean on someone else's strength for a bit. When I didn't have to have all the answers, let alone one answer. There are days I will go from 7:30 (when my bosses leave for work) until 5:30 (when they get home) without talking to anyone over the age of 4. Then I come home and maybe talk with some friends on the phone or read a book, but I long to just sit on the sofa and have a discussion with an adult.
I really hate the notion of a guy saving a girl because I think it sets up an unhealthy dynamic where resentment will grow. I don't feel I need a guy to save me from my life because I think my life is pretty great. I just wish I had someone to share it with. And as much as I long to have someone I can lean on, I want to be able to support and nurture their spirit as well. I want to encourage them and cheer them on when they have a bad day or are feeling worn out. I'm not looking for Superman and I'm not looking to be Superwoman, I just want a man of faith and character who I can partner with on this journey.
And who can help me pick up a bunch of electronic equipment and set it up so I don't have to be frustrated by it ;)