background img

When you find yourself in times of trouble

posted by:

When you need help, you run across two different types of people.

  • People like me, who have to figure out a path from here to helping you before they can say, “Sure! I’ll be right there!”
  • People like my sister, Tami, who say “Sure!” first and then figure out the how.

Three years ago, Tami called me when her husband, Gino was about to be released from the hospital after a 4-month stay with complete body paralysis and rehab. I had Tami’s car with her son’s carseat and Gino’s wheelchair in it, since I had been watching their toddler son much of the weekend. Her car allowed me to transport Dominic and both of my booster-seat kids, unlike my smaller vehicle.

My family and I had just sat down for dinner at an Italian restaurant. I am embarrassed to say that I asked if we could eat first before exchanging cars with her. I just couldn’t see how I would get a hungry family out of that restaurant without eating. She didn’t need the car seat or wheelchair immediately, so it wasn’t really a problem.

The problem, to me, was that I didn’t immediately say “Sure! Be right there!” I am just not built that way.

Tami, on the other hand, is famous for saying, “whaddaya need? I’m leaving right now.” Then she’d wake her son from his nap (those are sacred!), cancel his gymnastics class, stop at the grocery store and bring exactly the right items you didn’t even know you need, and show up on your doorstep with a smile.

I’ve always considered myself the Selfish One of the family. I am the eldest, and I am the only one of three to experience being the sole center of my parents’ universe. It’s only recently that I’ve been able to put a new spin on that: I’m not selfish, I just have healthy boundaries.

Still, it’s terrific to have a Tami who’s always got your back.

When someone needs you, are you more like Tami or like me?

Image: Sudoku.com

You may also like
Comments
  • comment avatar Amber Johnson September 30, 2010

    I am somewhere in the middle and I honestly have to say it depends who is in trouble. Some people I’d drop everything for but others I know (who often cry wolf) I have to admit I don’t give them the benefit of the doubt.

    Funny you wrote about this topic because I’ve been thinking a lot about it. My mother-in-law and sister-in-law are like Tami and ALWAYS put others first.

  • comment avatar Lori Lavender Luz September 30, 2010

    Oh, yes. The who is very important. It’s easier to drop everything for some people than others.

    Your in-laws sound like good people to have around!

  • comment avatar Tami September 30, 2010

    Did you need something, Lori? I’m on my way. 😉 Just as soon as I can see beyond the tears you brought to my eyes.

    Do you know how many times you have been here for me, sometimes saying what I “want” to hear, and other times saying what I “need” to hear?

    I am the lucky one because I have you for a sister. YOU are the perfect one. You always let me feel my feelings. You honor my feelings and never judge me for them. You let me be in my space and love me no matter how ugly my thoughts can be.

    Maybe that’s why I’m so willing to drop anything to help when you need it. You are always “right here for me.” Always.

  • comment avatar Lori Lavender Luz September 30, 2010

    I’m a very lucky person, for sure 🙂 <3 <3 <3

  • comment avatar Connie Weiss October 1, 2010

    I’m the kind that would drop everything. And I believe this is why my family takes advantage of me. I’ve had to create some boundaries there and they don’t like it.

  • comment avatar Lori October 1, 2010

    Connie, it’s a fine line to walk, isn’t it? Not surprising that family members wouldn’t be pleased that you’re no longer at their beck-and-call, without being able to reciprocate when you need them.

    Cheering you and your boundaries on.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *