Taking it from here

My best friend and I spent a good combined six or seven hours on the phone this weekend. (Gee, how nice it would have been to do it in person.) In any event, we had a fascinating discussion about how many of us take on the world’s problems, and when we ourselves encounter a roadblock, we get all atwitter and start babbling incoherently because we don’t know how to handle things that happen to us. Or maybe we do know but we’re so used to the caretaker role that I guess we just wish that someone would step into that role for us once in awhile.

I was telling her a story and she picked up on the finer details of it, in which someone had just basically told me that they’d take care of something. Understand, this is a foreign concept in my world. Me, not handling something? Not being involved from the beginning or at least coming in midstream and cleaning up the mess left behind? Me not ultimately resolving the situation, with amounts of effort and aggravation that will go not just unrewarded, but also unnoticed?

Anyway, she was trying to figure out what it was that impressed her so much about somebody doing me a favor (without me asking for it or even needing it, truth be told, although hot damn did I appreciate it), and I repeated a conversation I’d had with my mom awhile back. We don’t need the guys who claim to love puppies and long walks on beaches and all that sappy, happy romantic stuff. What we need? Someone who’s going to extract the problem from our death grips and tell us that they will take it from here.

Not to say we gals ain’t uber-capable of kicking ass, but when you’re in hyperdrive 24/7 (let’s face it, you know you are. I’ve seen you there), all things big and small get equally urgent (and sometimes, overwhelming) real estate in your mind and to-do list. And for those things that are small to the men yet still big to us, for them to offer to handle it doesn’t make us unable to run with the big boys — instead, it makes us breathe probably the first sigh of relief we’ve been able to exhale in years.

And even if I don’t take them up on their offer (which, yes I should when I can, and especially when there are things I can take off their hands when I can do them with equal ease as they can handle my drama), hell. Just their asking puts a lot of things back into perspective. Because when they can take it from here, we can take care of ourselves and each other so much better.

I always wonder what brought my friend and her husband together, and this discussion spurred her to remember it. They were living on separate coasts — he in Manhattan, she in Seattle — and she was preparing to move here for him. And everything went to shit, including wrecking her car. And she was nuts over it of course. He’d told her not to worry about it — he would handle the details. And she’s like me — details are not to be trusted elsewhere. But for some reason she believed him — believed in him — and 10 years later they’re still together, so he must’ve done something right. 😉

Amazing what a few simple words and a little bit of faith can produce. …

One Lonely Response to Taking it from here

  1. Sabre :

    I have always been an “I can do it by myself” sorta chick. I don’t need no stinkin’ help. And don’t touch my tools. They are mine! If a man said, “I’ll help” or “Here, let me get that,” he’d get the death-eye glare and the “I don’t need your help” speech.

    I think, honestly, it was all the years of hearing “I’ll do that” and nothing ever coming to fruition. There was never a single male who actually followed through with that stuff, and I just got to the point where I’d do it my damn self and not ask for help, and turn down whatever help was off-handedly offered.

    The new boyfriend? He just sort of *does* things. Doesn’t say he’s going to a thing, just does a thing. I’ve almost gotten used to it. Hell, I even let him use my drill.