Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Needing

One of the most uncomfortable phrases I've heard in my adult life is, "I need you." Needing someone has always been a sign of weakness and a sign of co-dependence. Scott and I had a rip-roaring argument one day because of this. We were driving to Springdale, UT, our little Utah heaven, and we were chatting about our relationship. I said, to him, "I don't need you." And before I could finish my statement, Scott was ready for me to pull off to the side of the road so he could walk back to Orem. I then said, "I want you in my life; I don't need you, I want you." And I finished that with, "I hope I never need you."

We then discussed the difference between needing and wanting. Scott was reared with frugal parents (understatement), and his father was always saying, "Is it a need or a want?" Scott often repeats that - needs versus wants - when he is thinking about purchasing something that costs more than a Pepsi. We were both reared with the value that we all should be self-sufficient, able to make our own decisions, and live with the repercussions of those. I once heard that my first sentence was, "I do it myself."

So, when an adult says to me, "I need you," I freeze. Need means lack of ability to take care of "it" yourself, need means weak, need means dependent.

The past month has been mostly good, but there have been times when considering the big C journey became very over-whelming, and I weakened to the point of need. First time - a quick trip to the doctor for a diagnostic ultrasound on my ovaries - I guess this type of cancer can spread quickly to the ovaries. When I received the call regarding this ultrasound, I called Scott. He didn't answer, I called again, no answer, I waited, called, no answer, and then drove the 20 miles to the doctor's office - all the time thinking, "If there is cancer, and I am alone, I'll freak out. I need Scott to be with me." Yikes! That NEED word entered my vocabulary (ps, tests were clear). Next, Wednesday evening, after a day filled with doctors' visits; Scott was at work, I was tired, the doorbell rang, a beautiful bouquet of flowers from UVU's English Department, and I broke down in tears. I needed someone's arms around me, and Scott wasn't available. I sent a text to Tyler, asking if he could come over. He was at my house in 10 minutes, and I cried in my beautiful son's arms. On Saturday - Scott and I drove through Provo Canyon to see the stunning autumn colors. I needed him by my side and together we oohed and aahed at the view. I needed his hand on my leg, I needed his voice, I needed his reassurance. Jenna went to 2.5 hours of chemo education with me yesterday. I needed another body with me to hear what I didn't hear, ask what I didn't and to smile and joke with. I have multiple doctor's visits and tests this week, with chemo starting on the 10th; I am needing my husband, my kids, my family, my friends. And I am accepting this - if they're arms are open for me, all I NEED to do is walk into them.

I'm learning that as my level of vulnerability goes up, the more I am willing to acknowledge that I cannot "do it myself," and that I don't have to. Learning - 


Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

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