I can be fiercely independent – to a fault. Asking a friend for a favor (a lift to the airport, to walk Wilbur when we’re not home, etc.) pains me, even though I’m happy to do those kindnesses for someone else.
Like waiting for this baby was a lesson in patience, these past weeks as a new mom have encouraged me to embrace the generosity of others with grace and gratitude.
Our mailbox has been filled with bright envelopes full of well-wishes, and I’ve found boxes of sweet presents on the stoop. Friends have brought food for us (apparently granola is like new mom crack) and visited to chat, and sent e-mails asking how they can help. This kind of attention would typically be difficult for me to accept.
I’m not sure why I’m so awkward about being the recipient of generosity. I don’t like to put people out, and I’m uncomfortable thinking about people spending money on me, or being the center of attention. (Which is why showers make me so anxious!) But maybe I’m also afraid to seem reliant or incapable, to come off like a mooch or to feel like I have a debt to be repaid?
Being the recipient of such thoughtfulness is incredible; accepting generosity is the key to feeling like we’re part of a community. Thank you, thank you, from the bottom of my heart!
P.S. Tomorrow (July 3) Joe and I celebrate our third wedding anniversary. We’re hoping to spend the evening on a blanket with 100,000 of our closest friends at one of my favorite events in Des Moines — the Yankee Doodle Pops! Hopefully Emmett enjoys patriotic music as much as I do – or sleeps through it.