Asking for Help with MS
Multiple sclerosis is a humbling disease. It strips away your abilities in many creative and unpredictable ways.
It is important to remain as independent as possible while thumbing your nose to its ravaging nature.
Most days we can pull it off. We can saunter around like we have this thing under control and that we are just fine, thank you very much!
Some people are more fortunate than others and can remain independent for the majority of their lifespans. However, everyone – and I do mean every single one of us – will find ourselves in need of help from other people from time to time.
Why Asking for Help is Hard
Asking for help can be a very daunting task. It seems easy to ask for help, but many people carry an emotional pride that can get in the way and hold us back from saying those three important words: “I need help.”
Here’s an example:
You are on a business trip. You had to take an early morning flight out. You weren’t able to get any sleep the night before because you didn’t want to oversleep and miss your flight. You got off the plane and went straight to the office, scheduled for back-to-back meetings all day.
You realize that your fatigue is settling in and by 2 pm you are pinching your leg under the conference table so that you don’t pass out right there. The sheer act of keeping your eyes open becomes an act of futility and you are two seconds from becoming the laughing stock of the company for falling unconscious and slamming your head on the table in the middle of a meeting with new clients.
What do you do?
This is a tricky situation to be in. This example is a real situation from my own personal experience. I have to say, in that moment I was terrified! And if I’d had more energy, I am sure that I would have had an all out panic attack in that room.
Fortunately for me, I was too tired to have a panic attack add to the stress of the situation. Instead, I felt alone. I was sitting in a room full of strangers. The only two people that I knew were my boss and his peer from another department in our company. I used all of the coping skills that I could muster.