I'm fine, but hold my hand please. Learning to accept help and be fine not being fine.

MARCH 12, 2024  /  RENEE ROBINSON  / 

I'm fine, but hold my hand please. Learning to accept help and be fine not being fine.
This week's guest post is written by my friend, Renee Robinson. Renee is a gifted author who writes about everyday struggles in a way that has encouraged me over the years. This post communicates well the challenge we face when our role switches from being provider to recipient and how we can chose to respond. ~Adina
"In my world of darkness,
I had learned that holding a hand
could be like medicine."
The Cay, Taylor, 1969
I lay on the paper covered bed in the dimly lit room while she guided the ultrasound tool over my chest. I tried to avoid the screen. The warm jelly instantly brought a flood of memories that I'd rather forget. September 2007 when an ultrasound confirmed we lost one of the twins I was carrying. Days later, I lost the second baby.
Sixteen years later, and I'm back on that table. This time for a look at a lump I found in my breast. Sixteen years ago I was begging God to see anything in that ultrasound. This time I was begging Him to see nothing.
Despite her best professional efforts, I knew she saw something. She left and brought the doctor with her. I knew, but I tried to pretend I didn't. As the doctor began talking, my tears joined in sync.
"We are scheduling you for a biopsy," is all I really heard. The rest of her words intersected my own racing thoughts.
The mammogram and ultrasound were on a Wednesday. The biopsy would be the following Monday. Steve was scheduled to leave for a business trip/meeting an hour before my biopsy.
I'd be fine. I could totally do this. I did NOT want him to even consider canceling as we would have no news for days. A simple procedure in and out in an hour.
I did something so opposite of my nature that I'm still surprised. I texted one of my closest friends to go with me. Immediately, I felt silly. She should be homeschooling her kids. She wouldn't even be in the room with me. Why am I asking her to go sit in the waiting room for an hour? I had no real answer - only that I felt a prompting from the Lord, and I've learned not to question, just act.
Some of you reading can't relate to my reluctance to invite a friend to accompany me. Self-sufficiency is my weakness. I'm strong and capable, which can be one of the greatest hindrances in my life.
I tried to uninvite her, but she wouldn't hear of it. As we chatted in the waiting room, I was grateful for the distraction and lack of silence. Knowing she was nearby praying and waiting brought such comfort to me.
Back in the same room from days ago, I lay again on the crinkly bed. A different doctor, a different ultrasound nurse, and an additional nurse. God sent three kind, tender, and compassionate humans to me that day.
As the doctor prepared to numb me, she asked how I was doing. "I'm fine! "It's a standard answer. I was fine. My hands were sweaty, but I could do this. I've done far worse.
I'm fine.
The ultrasound nurse spoke softly, "Would you like me to hold your hand?"
My instinct was to answer, "No. I'm fine, but thank you." I was fine, but yet.
What do we miss out on when we allow ourselves to "be fine"?
"Yes, thank you." Softly, she took my hand in hers for the next 45 minutes.
In The Cay by Theordore Taylor, we read Philip's reflection, "In my world of darkness, I had learned that holding a hand could be like medicine."
I took the medicine.
The very next day the results call came from the nurse. Thirty minutes later I called my husband, told our boys and family members, and shared with our closest friends. It was breast cancer. Slow growing and non-aggressive. It was good bad news.
Offers to help were immediate. I declined because I'm fine.
Then a friend offered to simply come sit. I thought of Job's friends who sat in silence with him and reflected on the gift of simply sitting in heartache with a friend.
This friend continued to offer, and I continued to decline, but that gentle nudge appeared again.
Accept the offer.
"Ok, yes, thank you."
She came along with my friend who sat with me in the waiting room the day before.
We shared, grieved, laughed, and simply sat together. It very well could have carried more healing than any treatment they try to offer to kill the disease inside.
To be fully human is to accept we are weak, we need help, we need support, and we need community.
Instead of falling back into old habits, I will ask for help and accept the gifts of help and comfort as they come. I've learned it is a two-way blessing. Who am I to withhold that blessing from others? It is the sweetest way we experience the nearness of God.

I'm fine, but hold my hand please. Learning to accept help and be fine not being fine.

Renee Robinson is an author and entrepreneur from Elkhorn, Nebraska. She writes on a variety of topics including faith, life, health, homeschool, travel, books, culture, and screens. She has dear friends in the several cities around the country they have called home. In addition to her husband, Steve, she has three amazing sons. Be sure to connect with Renee on Substack.

I'm fine, but hold my hand please. Learning to accept help and be fine not being fine.

#1: Want to include an easy and festive dessert with your next meal? Give these delicious Lucky Charm Cookies a try!
Don't have Instagram? Click here for the recipe!
#2:Check out this 'You Are Simply the Best' lemonade free printable!
#3: Earlier this month, Kelli shared in our blog how to make DIY Beeswax Food Wraps, and Nadia gave it a try! This is such a fun idea!
#4: Looking for an easy Easter appetizer or fun side to include with a meal? We've got you covered! These Mini Carrot Peppers are delicious, and the best part is they only take 10 minutes to make!
Don't have Instagram? Click here for the recipe!
#5: The last thing you want to do when taking someone a meal is to give them food that they can't eat. If the recipient of your meal schedule has food allergies, here are some great recipes and resources for you as you consider what to make.
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Adina & Maureen
Adina & Maureen

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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