Yesterday I had the honor of speaking to the MOPS (mothers of preschoolers) First Frisco group! During the Q & A portion of the event, I felt inspired to share a recent happening in my life that taught me a valuable lesson. Based on conversations I had with some of the women, it seemed to resonate, so I thought I’d share it with you!
We all have our Goliaths. The giants we are afraid to face. For some of us, these fears can develop from trauma, pain, uncertainty, or experience. Some of us bury our heads in the sand and ignore these occurrences, or avoid them until it’s inevitable that one day we have to face them.
Years after my husband passed away, I started developing anxiety around my health and my mortality. I developed fear around going to doctor’s offices and hospitals. Those places brought up a lot of trauma for me in regards to all the time we spent there and the slow process of watching my husband die.
Then in 2017, I started having health challenges of my own. I found myself shuffled around to many different specialists, getting tests, scans, and even a procedure. It was all terrifying and overwhelming because mentally, I was afraid I was going to die. When Andrew passed away at 30, I realized if it could happen to him, then it could happen to me.
After going through all of the different doctors and getting inconclusive results, I decided right then and there to take matters into my own hands and make my health a priority.
I started working out again regularly, drinking more water, getting more sleep, eating healthier meals, sitting in saunas, doing Cryotherapy, getting massages, going to a chiropractor regularly, and taking vitamins. Slowly, over time, my health began to improve, and I grew stronger.
Even doing this, there were still lingering symptoms that concerned me. I avoided addressing these symptoms for a long time until I recently decided to face my Goliath and see a specialist to get a doctor’s opinion.
As I was on the phone confiding to my dear friend Megan about my anxiety around going to the appointment, she kindly offered to go with me. I found myself saying yes, and then a slew of emotions came over me: guilt, shame, embarrassment, vulnerability, not wanting to be a burden…
The next day I told someone close to me Megan was coming with me to my doctor’s appointment. The person responded that Megan didn’t need to go since I wasn’t having surgery and therefore didn’t need anyone to drive me home after the surgery. I told the person that my friend wanted to go.
That conversation brought back up all of the shame and guilt I was feeling before. It made me question my decision, and I went back and forth as to whether I should call and tell my friend not to come with me.
I felt so foolish for wanting help and support. I’d grown up with such strong women who sucked it up, buttercup, and picked themselves up by their bootstraps and did it all themselves, no complaints.
I felt this spirit of shame around asking for help. That I was weak if I didn’t go it alone, but this other part of me knew there was another way. It may not have been the way I was raised, but I was willing to be open to receiving help, so I decided to let my friend be there for me and to face my Goliath together with her.
On the day of the appointment, I found out the doctor’s office was inside of a hospital, and of course, it was just past the oncology unit.
I was walking through my fears.
Megan showed up, and I immediately felt a peace wash over me. We laughed as we sat in the waiting room, not knowing if they would even let her into the examining room. They did, and she was with me as I teared up telling the doctor about losing my husband to cancer and how doctor’s offices made me anxious. Megan left the room during the cringy parts of the visit. When it was all said and done, she was there to celebrate my relief at the good news.
When I asked Megan’s permission to share this, she said yes and told me to make sure and mention what an honor and joy it was to be with me that day and be there for me.
I learned that day it’s OK to ask for help on things others may think are silly or unnecessary. No one has walked a day in your shoes, so they don’t know what it’s like to be you. Only you know what that’s like, so don’t be afraid to ask for the support you need. There are people who want and are willing to be there for you. Don’t let the lies creep in that tell you you are weak or foolish for wanting support. You are courageous, and you don’t have to go it alone. Love and Blessings, Sweet Friend!
PS If you know of a group or organization looking to hire a speaker to give an inspirational message, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org I’d love to serve! Thank you so much for your support!