Friday, February 28 2014
"Don't be shy about asking for help.
I was raised and taught to be self reliant and to never ask for help. So it has been something that I thought would make me appear weak and pathetic that I was better than someone who asks for help.
I realised yesterday that I have been wrong for many years.
Even when I went through my brain surgery, my endometriosis surgery, the menopause then my bowel removal surgery I never asked for help. Call it stoicism or stubborness but I call it being weak.
There were times where I needed help but just never felt right asking for help.
I say it was being weak because it takes someone strong to admit defeat and ask for help.
But yesterday I did ask for help and it felt great!
I had been studying for the last month to be a social worker doing a Certificate IV at TAFE and have been too embarrased to talk to someone or ask for help, and was ready to drop out.
I wasn't asking help academically as I am smart and capable of studying, it was just being less than a year after my surgery I thought I was ready and realised I wasn't mentally, physically and spiritually ready.
There was a whole week I had to have off because of the Endometriosis, then there was a couple of days I was in hospital because of my pancreatitis and my pancreas flaring up.
I decided that before dropping out I would meet with the course co-ordinator to discuss my options whether there was a part time option I could do a couple of days a week rather than fulltime or if there was an at home option I could do.
Well yesterday I met with the co-ordinator and told her about my health issues and that I didn't feel okay to do fulltime.
I spoke to her about how I had time off because of my endometriosis, and some days because of my pancreas. I also told her about my social anxiety, depression and that I didn't feel comfortable being in the class with 40 students as I felt so judged.
I told her about how the desks in some of the rooms are at the height of my stoma and for 9 hours it cuts in and is rather painful and also how the chairs in some classrooms cut the circulation to my legs.
She told me that I should be in the Diploma class and will work towards getting me in the class which has only 6 students in it. She also said I could do two days a week and would take 18 months (and can pick the workload up as I feel better). Apparantly I could get RPL for some subjects as I had completed similar Nursing subjects.
But what was one of the things she talked about that I wasn't aware existed was disability support services. She said she would like to see them involved which under their funding would mean having a one on one tutor for the work that I miss when I am sick, especially when my endometriosis takes a week of being house bound. Also through the disability support services that I would be entitled to having furniture in the room that is accomodating for my physical health conditions such as a desk that is the right height or a better chair.
Before I left she said to me that she could tell it took a lot of strength to ask for help and that by asking for help and arranging the meeting it showed that I was in fact strong and that there is support there for me.
I left feeling confident and didn't feel weak at all for asking for help.
I realised if you don't ask for help you don't know how much better things could have been.
If I didn't take the courage and ask for help I would have dropped out or went to class being in pain because of the desks and chairs.
So it is okay to ask for help and get the support you need!