There has never been such a time in life as this when I am so in need of help from others. It’s an extremely humbling place to be and, oddly, a very gratifying one. I’ve had a friend randomly stop by to help me finish stringing my Christmas lights. Another friend dropped of a large jar of homemade laundry detergent when I simply asked for a cup so I could try it out on my cloth diapers. My father-in-law has come over dozens of times to build me an outdoor clothesline, hang my hammock, fix my tub drain and the like. My mother-in-law has picked up and dropped off groceries at times when I couldn’t squeeze out of the house due to naptime restrictions, purchased new clothes the next day at the mere mention of needing a few more things, and the like. We’ve had godparents travel from Illinois and Colorado just to make sure they are at Maisy’s dedication (and they brought gifts). We are so undeserving of such a loving and supportive community! Sure, getting the most delicious homemade lemon cheesecake in the world brought to your front door is incredible, you have no idea, but it’s the heart of these friends that is the most incredible. Friends and family have been so giving of their time, money and resources. In a way I feel like I will never be able to give back what I’ve been given, but I do feel empowered and inspired to be that gift to others.
Through this whole experience I’ve also learned that it is a gift to accept the generosity of others. There are so many friends that not only willingly gave of themselves for us but they wholeheartedly pursued giving to us. That being said, I could have made it a lot easier on some friends by offering up ways they could help more readily. Especially because there have been several times now that I’ve pursued lending a helping hand or gifting a home cooked meal to someone else and haven’t been able to coax from them practical means to do so. Sure, people can help unaided, but it’s much easier to know any food allergies or if they actually need a essentials like toilet paper before showing up at their house with such surprises.
In the end, let’s say this is a challenge to give and receive – give someone the gift of meeting a need and if someone wants to help let them.