Weekend Wrap-Up: It’s okay to ask for help

September 30, 2007

So once again I missed my Friday Fruits and Veggies post.  But I have a good excuse.  I was asleep by 6:00 last night.  Then up at 10 p.m. and back in bed at 1 a.m.  I didn’t roll out of bed today until about 10:30.

It’s been a rough week.  Work has been very busy and Mr. D and I single-handedly planned and executed a Young Democrats event on Thursday night.

This event, which had been talked about and conceptualized for about two months, literally came together in less than two weeks.  With some (read: minimal) help from the Board President and other members, we created and mailed about 1100 post card invites, learned “constant contact” and sent email invites to current members with its email marketing application, spruced up the website and myspace page to advertise the event, shopped for and prepared all the food and drink for about 70 guests, set-up and broke-down the day of the event…I am totally shocked it went off (seemingly) without a hitch. 

In the midst of putting together 100 antipasti skewers for the event (this is after I’d spent 3 hours shopping, turned 4 baguettes into crostini, made two different crostini toppings, prepped the goodies for the skewers and downed a half a bottle of wine) I thought, “I haven’t had dinner in three goddamn days!”

For real!  I told Mr. D on Wednesday that I felt like poo and that I was pissed that planning this event was making me sick.  I am not the kind of person who can go without significant sleep and regular meals.  I get dehydrated and bitchy and am reminded that I have hypothyroidism – something I hate being reminded of. 

I am still recouping two days out – getting back to regular eating and sleeping and water consumption – but ultimately I think it was worth it.  I mean, come on, this is the first time in my life, aside from when I was in school, that I’ve spent more hours in my day on something other than work and personal stuff like watching TV and having sex.  Along with feeling like shit I also feel a great sense of accomplishment. 

I had never done anything like this before, ostensibly planning a fairly upscale event (I would later learn that the venue was super posh) from start to finish for upwards of 50 people.  I had no idea how to work within a budget, how much food to buy, how much wine people would drink, whether the venue hostess would supply anything, should I get approval from the Board President or just GO!  Shit, I didn’t even see the venue until two days prior.  And jeebus was I sweating bullets when the woman who showed me the space said it would be a good idea to check with the concierge to make sure the room was booked and the $500 deposit paid.  Wait a minute.  Concierge???  Five Hundred Dollar Deposit!!!  We’re a bunch of Young Democrats for chrissake!!

Thankfully it all worked out and I learned big lessons in time management and delegation/control.  Hopefully I can take what I’ve learned and apply it to other events and, more importantly, to my own personal life.  I’ve mentioned here that I have a hard time saying “no” and honestly, even more difficult is saying “can you help me”.

I am fiercely independent. I get it from both sides.  My mother and my grandmother were/are very independent financially, mentally and emotionally and my father was extremely private, almost secretive when it came to his personal life.  I am slowly starting to realize that this personality trait isn’t a help, it’s a hindrance.  In planning this event in particular I would have been much better off if I had taken the offers of assistance I was given and reached out to those who didn’t explicitly offer help but who I knew would have helped but were simply waiting to be asked.

So my take-away is: Ask For Help If You Need It.  Let people in and don’t be ashamed or feel guilty if you can’t do it all on your own.  If a task is making you sick you need help but if you ask and people say “no”, so be it.  Life goes on.


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